Housing market in York County soaring — but lack of inventory persists

Tina Locurto
York Dispatch

For housing in York County, it may be a new year but it's the same old story:

Inventory. Inventory. Inventory.

In York County, the month’s supply of available homes reached the lowest point ever recorded. 

Clockwise from top left, Kelsey and Ryan Pedmo are shown with their sons Gannon, 7, Maverick, 4, and their miniature dachaund Hunter, 11, at their home in Paradise Township, Friday, Jan. 21, 2022. The Pedmo family closed on their home, located in Paradise Village, in November of 2021. Dawn J. Sagert photo

To put that into perspective, there were only 261 residential homes available for sale at the end of January, according to Elle Hale, president of the Realtors Associations of York and Adams Counties. 

So, what's the issue? Trust, according to Hale.

“I have people who want to sell their homes, but they want to have a home to move into before they can sell," she said. “While they’re waiting, there are other people in the same situation also waiting."

Elle Hale

This vicious circle can only be broken if people who are holding on to their homes can trust that they will sell it and be able to find something else, Hale said.

The 2022 housing market start was a mundane one. In York County, 461 homes were sold during January, which remains the same from last year.

In 2021, the housing market in York County soared to record-breaking figures.

More:Buying a home in a pandemic? 'You have to be extremely impulsive'

More:Realtors: We just don't have the surplus of homes to show in York County

In all, 7,346 homes were sold —  a 10% increase in home sales compared with 2020.

For years, inventory has remained a challenge for Realtors. The problem was only exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Factors including the banking industry's tightening of loan policies for contractors and sharp increases in the cost of building materials have caused fewer homes to be built and construction to be stalled.

By the time the spring market rolls around, Hale said, she hopes to see more people looking to sell.

“There's someone else looking out there for your home, and they’re not listing theirs because they haven’t found their home yet," Hale said. "You list — maybe they list — and it could work out."

A sign marks a completed home sale along Hanover Street in Glen Rock Tuesday, Dec. 28, 2021. Bill Kalina photo

Several school districts, including West York and South Eastern, saw significant increases in the number of houses sold in January.

In January, 34 houses were sold in the West York School District, a 100% increase compared with the previous January, when 17 houses were sold. 

South Eastern also saw a 100% increase in home sales relative to the same time last year.

Dallastown and Northern York school districts experienced a decline in home sales, reporting decreases of 44% and 38% respectively.

Housing sales are broken down by school district in RAYAC's report.

“We're waiting to see what the spring will bring,” Hale said. “I hope spring is fruitful."

— Reach Tina Locurto at tlocurto@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @tina_locurto.