Home profit margins soften nationwide

Homeowners who sold their home in Q1 2019 experienced an average price gain of $57,500 over purchase — a $2,500 quarter-over-quarter decline

Selling a home lately hasn’t been as big of a financial boon as it once was, according to the Q1 2019 U.S. Home Sales Report from Attom Data Solutions, released today.

Homeowners who sold their home in Q1 2019 experienced an average price gain of $57,500 since purchase — a $2,500 quarter-over-quarter decline from Q4 2018 and a $767 year-over-year increase from Q1 2018.

Attom chief product officer Todd Teta says the decline could be temporary or the signal of a more permanent market shift.

“We are starting to see homes sales prices and profit margins softening for the nation, and the average homeownership tenure did see a slight dip from last quarter,” Teta explained in the report.

“Home prices are still above pre-recession peaks in 59 percent of local markets, and as the buying season starts to kick into gear, the next few months may provide even more answers to the question of whether a lasso is indeed around the market or if the recent trend is a temporary bump in the ride.”

Median home prices in 73 of the 123 metropolitan statistical areas included in the report were at least 40 percent above their pre-recession peaks, with Nashville (55 percent above); San Antonio (49 percent above); San Jose (43 percent above); Houston (43 percent above); and Kansas City (41 percent above) leading the way for MSAs with a population of more than 1 million.

On the other hand, median home prices in Hartford (17 percent below); Philadelphia (15 percent below); Chicago (14 percent below); Baltimore (13 percent below); Miami (12 percent below); Washington, D.C. (10 percent below); and Birmingham (10 percent below) are still least 10 percent below their pre-recession peaks.

As Teta mentioned, softening home prices may be encouraging more movement as evidenced by shorter homeownership tenures. In Q1 2019, the average homeowner had owned their home for 8.05 years — a slight decrease from the previous quarter’s average of 8.17 years, but above Q1 2018’s average of 7.75 years.

Distressed sales also continued their annual decline (-1.1 percent) alongside sales to FHA buyers who offered a down payment less than 10 percent (-0.9 percent).

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