October surprise: Housing market 'unusually busy' in York County
Realtors have been surprised by what's become an unusually busy housing market during the autumn season.
Last month, house sales were boosted by 7%, according to statistics provided by the Realtors Association of York and Adams Counties, or RAYAC.
President Tina Llorente attributes much of this to continued remote working due to the COVID-19 pandemic allowing buyers the ease of access to shop on their own time.
“We're still seeing all of these different elements layered on top of our normal buyer and seller demand," she said, adding that kids learning remotely and parents working from home allow for buyers to shop during months that typically slow down.
In September, 695 homes were sold in York County — a 7% increase from the same month last year, when 649 houses were sold, according to RAYAC's monthly report.
Additionally, 5,449 homes were sold during the first nine months of 2021 — which is a 16% increase from last year.
“It is still a very robust market," Llorente said. “We’ve got a lot of pent-up demand still."
Though the housing market is continuing to boom, inventory remains to be one of the biggest challenges facing York County agents.
In October, York County is hovering at about 1.2 months of available inventory — where ideally six months of inventory is the standard, Llorente said.
She used a metaphor to explain.
“Think of it as a bathtub full of water with the drain open but the faucet running," Llorente said. “The bathtub can never fill up. Our inventory — if you will — is flat because as homes come on the market they get sucked up right away."
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With new development projects in the works, Llorente said she is hopeful more inventory will come available.
Several school districts, including Central York and Hanover Public, saw increases in the number of houses sold in September.
Approximately 79 houses were sold in the Central York School District, a 55% increase compared with the previous September, when 51 houses were sold.
Hanover Public saw a 38% increase in home sales relative to the same time last year.
West York and Dallastown school districts experienced a decline in home sales, reporting decreases of 37% and 26% respectively.
Housing sales are broken down by school district in RAYAC's report.
— Reach Tina Locurto at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @tina_locurto.