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VOL. 37 | NO. 37 | Friday, September 13, 2013

New boats, cars are good signs for Middle Tennessee Realtors

By Bill Lewis

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Midstate real estate trends for August 2013

August 2013 real estate trends for Davidson, Williamson, Rutherford and Wilson counties, as compiled by Chandler Reports.

Chandler Reports has been publishing Real Estate Market Data since 1968. That year, Chandler began collecting residential sales information for the Chandler Residential Report, considered the authoritative source for residential real estate sales information. Over the next three decades, the publications have been continually refined, enhanced and expanded, growing to include lot sales data, new residential construction and absorption information, and commercial sales. In 1987, Chandler Reports began one of the first on–line real estate market data services in the country, and is a nationally recognized leader in the industry. In 2004, Chandler Reports was purchased by The Daily News Publishing Co. In 2007, Chandler introduced RegionPlus, including property research for Nashville and Middle Tennessee. Visit online at chandlerreports.com.

Davidson County by Price Range

Davidson County by Zip Code

Williamson County by Price Range

Williamson County by Zip Code

Rutherford County by Price Range

Rutherford County by Zip Code

Wilson County by Price Range

Wilson County by Zip Code

Home sales are soaring in the Nashville region, but that’s no surprise to Phillip Teal. He knows the housing market is hot when he sees a lot of new cars on the road.

Even better, these days many of those cars are pulling brand new boats.

“We are very much into a happy time,” the Wilson County-based Realtor says.

The numbers back him up.

For the first eight months of the year, there were 21,094 closings across the region, nearly 23 percent more than the 17,174 sales reported for the same period last year, Greater Nashville Association of Realtors figures show.

In August, there were 3,084 closings throughout the area, an 18.3 percent increase over the 2,606 sales during August 2012, GNAR’s report says.

In Davidson County, sales were up 8.1 percent and the average price was up 5.8 percent. There were 1,354 sales last month for an average price of $216,528. In August 2012, there were 1,253 sales for an average of $204,580, according to a market survey by Chandler Reports.

One of the city’s hottest areas is the Jefferson Street-Germantown area near the state Capitol. There has been significant home building activity in the Germantown neighborhood and in neighboring Salem Town.

There were 45 sales in the area in August, a nearly 61 percent increase over the 28 closings a year ago. Last month’s average price was $186,374, a 53.8 percent increase over the average of $121,215 a year ago.

Sales also were strong in the 37209 zip code, which includes Sylvan Park, Charlotte Park and other areas west to the Cheatham County line. Last month there were 89 sales in the area, an increase of almost 31 percent over the 68 sales a year ago.

The average price last month was $201,093, a 27.4 percent increase over the average of $157,888 in August 2012, according to Chandler Reports.

Many young professionals and people moving to Nashville want to live inside the city. In their search for affordable prices close to downtown, they are buying homes in emerging neighborhoods that had previously fallen on hard times, says Keller Williams Realtor Paul Armstrong.

“They are looking outside the established 12 Souths,” he says, and are buying new construction in neighborhoods like the Nations, also known as Historic West Town, and Charlotte Park on the west side of the city. Wedgewood-Houston, a neighborhood adjacent to the State Fairgrounds, is another popular destination.

“There’s a movement toward urban living. People are less inclined to move out to the suburbs,” says Armstrong.

Williamson County was the region’s strongest market in August. There were 635 sales last month, a 25.7 percent increase over last year’s 505 sales. The average price last month was $414,588, a 12.1 percent increase over the average of $369,682 in August 2012.

Sales were particularly strong in Spring Hill, the fast-growing city south of Franklin along Interstate 65. There were 86 closings last month, nearly 46 percent more than the 59 sales in August 2012. Last month’s average price was $268,861, an increase of nearly 14 percent over the average of $236,307 a year ago.

In Wilson County, 274 homes were sold last month, a 6.6 percent increase over the 257 sales in August 2012. The average price last month was $216,041, an 8.4 percent increase over the average of $199,242 a year ago.

In Mt. Juliet, there were 145 sales, an increase of nearly 17 percent over the 124 sales in August 2012. The average price last month was $241,215, a 12.5 percent increase over the average of $214,393 in August 2012.

In Rutherford County, there were 569 sales last month, an 8.8 percent increase over the 523 sales in August 2012. The average price last month was $173,840, an increase of nearly 5 percent over the average price of $165,918 a year ago.

Murfreesboro’s 37128 zip code was especially active. There were 153 sales last month, an increase of 23.4 percent over last year’s 124 closings. Last month’s average price was $188,090, an increase of 7.2 percent over the average of $175,467 in August 2012.

Teal, the Realtor who knows the market is hot when he sees cars towing boats, was recently on the road with a client who had his own way of gauging the health of the real estate market.

The client paused for a while, watching big semi-trucks pass by on Interstate 40. He could tell that almost all of them were packed with tons of freight, either parts on their way to manufacturers or finished goods on the way to retailers.

“He said that means the economy is strong,” Teal says.

And when the economy is strong, he says, so are home sales.

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