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VOL. 132 | NO. 209 | Friday, October 20, 2017

As Temps Drop, Shelby County Home Sales Continue to Rise

By Patrick Lantrip

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As the temperatures cool, the Memphis-area housing market typically does too, but September home sales figures in Shelby County continued to outperform those of previous years.

The Shelby County housing market outperformed in September, with the number of home sales increasing 10 percent and the sales volume rising 19 percent. (Daily News File/Alan Howell)

The average home sales price in September increased 8 percent to $171,929 compared to a year ago, according to real estate information company Chandler Reports, chandlerreports.com. Germantown East’s 38139 ZIP code recorded the highest average price for the month, at $445,117.

Meanwhile, the number of units sold rose 10 percent, with 1,687 sales last month compared with 1,535 a year ago. 

“There are still multiple offers going on in all areas,” said Chet Whitsitt, Crye-Leike Real Estate Services sales leader and vice president. “I listed a $165,000 house near Shelby Drive and Holmes Road about a week ago one morning, and by the end of that night, not only had it sold, but I had six offers in writing.” 

The volume of Shelby County home sales reached $290 million for the month, up 19 percent from $244 million a year ago. 

Year to date through September, the number of recorded home sales is 10 percent higher than it was during the first nine months of 2016, while the average home sales price is up 4 percent and total sales revenue is up 14 percent, according to Chandler Reports data.

Existing-home sales in September rose 10 percent, with 1,620 recorded last month compared with 1,470 in September 2016. The average price of existing homes reached $162,794 in September, up 7 percent from $152,311 a year ago.

Sales of new homes rose 3 percent for the month, with 67 sales recorded compared to 65 in September 2016. And the average price of a new home rose 3 percent to $392,795 from $314,094 a year ago. Arlington’s 38002 ZIP code recorded the most new-home sales for September, with 21 sales averaging $332,968. 

Whitsitt said that the average new home sales prices will most likely continue to climb as developers are not only facing a shortage of lots, but now a possible shortage of materials and workers is in the mix in the wake of hurricane-induced damage in Texas and Florida. 

“The builders are having a hard time keeping workers because they are all flocking to the Texas area and to Florida,” he said. “So there’s a worker shortage and possibly a lumber and materials shortage. They are having to tear out lumber that has mold in it, not to mention nails, sheetrock and wiring.”


Developers pulled 104 new-home permits in August, a 25 percent increase from the 83 permits pulled in August 2016, according to the Chandler Reports data.

Regency Home Builders was the top builder in August, with 18 new-home sales recorded averaging $302,733 and 23 new home permits filed averaging $264,467.

Arlington/Lakeland’s 38002 ZIP code claimed the most new home permits in August, with 29 averaging $255,876. 

“With new construction, they know they can sell. That’s why they are not reducing very much, if any,” said Vinh Le with First National Realty. “The demand is very strong.”

For example, Le said he had a client from Dallas who wanted to buy a house under construction and figured he could make an offer several thousand dollars less than the asking price and still land the property. 

“His final price was $2,000 less than the asking price with a 3 percent closing cost,” he said. “I told him I didn’t think it would work, and I was right. The builder came back at full price with a 3 percent closing cost, and that’s the norm.”

Le said it’s not uncommon for him to sell a house in a subdivision that’s under construction, then return with a new client a few weeks later and find the asking prices have all increased. 

“They know that they can make an extra $2,000 per house because supply and demand,” Le said.


Shelby County residential foreclosures continued to drop in September, according to Chandler Reports, with 101 recorded for the month – a 28 percent decrease from 141 last August.

Of those 101, the average foreclosure amount was $79,524 with an average tax appraisal value of $107,813.

Cordova North’s 38016 ZIP code had the highest foreclosure inventory value, $14 million across 93 properties, while Westwood’s 38109 ZIP code had the most homes in foreclosure inventory through August, with 151 valued at $6 million.

Among lenders, Fannie Mae had the highest foreclosure inventory, with 141 homes valued at $15 million.

Bank sales, or foreclosure sales, represented 7 percent of all Shelby County homes sold in September. The 113 bank sales recorded last month marked a 19 percent decrease. The volume of bank sales rose 1 percent to $11.2 million.

Meanwhile, nonbank sales rose 13 percent to 1,574 last month, with the volume of nonbank sales increasing 20 percent to $233 million.

Chandler Reports is a division of The Daily News Publishing Co.

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