Lake Martin waterfront real estate is on a tear.
Last month, we saw August’s year to date totals exceed the entire year of 2008. I speculated in this post that we had a good chance of defeating 2007’s 12 month total of 156 with a strong September. Sure enough, 24 lakeside homes were sold by all agents in the Lake Martin MLS*, which gave 2009 a total of 162 homes sold.
Here is a chart showing Lake Martin waterfront property sales by month for the last three calendar years:
All of these big sales months add up. As you can see from the cumulative chart below, if we look at the entire Lake Martin MLS, including all agents, all brokerages, everything, we sold 137 waterfront homes in the entire year of 2008. We passed that mark in only 8 months this year. In all months of 2007, 156 were sold. So at 162 through 9 months in 2009, we have defeated yet another year.
We still have a lot of waterfront homes on the market. One aspect of September’s sales results that I did not like to see was the increase in homes for sale on Lake Martin. We were on a nice, seasonal downward slope that I was hoping would take us to more normal levels, away from the step ladder highs we have been witnessing over the past three years. We increased to 494 homes for sale in September, up from 488 in August.
True, this number is still about 10% down from the all time high of 555 in 2009, but we are still 5% away from the 2008 high of 524. Sellers – YOU MUST CONTINUE TO PRICE AGGRESSIVELY! Please do not take this post as a sign you can ask whatever you want and get it.
All of the above info relates to Lake Martin homes, condos, town homes, etc. It does not contain lots. The number of waterfront lots sold has not picked up. Our year to date total of 16 in 2009 is on pace to match the 18 sold in all of 2008, and is a far cry from the 34 of 2007.
As with homes, we will need to see an increase in the number of waterfront lots sold before we see any movement in prices.
To continue a theme started earlier this year, I will attempt to examine the effect of the fire selling of the Crowne Pointe condo complex. Earlier this year, we discovered that while the condo sales certainly helped prop up the sales numbers for the lake as a whole, it was not the only driver of the sales resurgence.
What about now? Most of the units in Crowne Pointe are sold and the buyers have closed already. Now that the dust has mostly settled, what can we say about its effect on the Lake Martin real estate market?
We can see from the above chart that all non single family homes (which includes ALL condos, town homes, etc) sold this year represents about 36% of all sales. The average from 2006 – 2008 is 18%. Interestingly, the average from 1-1-06 to 9-30-09 is about 20%.
Yes, we still have had a proportionately high number of non-single family homes sold in the waterfront market this year. But if you remove its influence and back it down to the four year average of 20%, you are only removing about 16 sales, which still puts 2009 ahead of 2008 already.
My answer is the same as July: Crowne Pointe has helped, but has not made, the year’s sales. 2009 is / was strong on its own.
(*)Disclaimers: All of the above info was taken from the Lake Martin Area Association of Realtors Multiple Listing Service. Accuracy is not guaranteed but deemed reliable. The above does not include sales by FSBOs or developers that sell privately and not through the MLS. But, I do think that the above represents a very large majority of all sales on Lake Martin.