Buyers Pushed Up the Pace on Pending Home Sales in August


Realtors® not seeing impact on buyers and sellers by the upcoming presidential election

WALTHAM, Mass. – (RealEstateRama) — September 13, 2016 – The Massachusetts Association of Realtors® (MAR) reported today that buyers were not deterred by the hottest August on record in pushing up the number of accepted offers that were made as pending home sales rose again over 24 percent from last year. Condominium pending sales were also up 17 percent as prices for both property types continue to go up. The strong market was reflected in a high Realtor® Market Confidence Index, while Price Confidence was essentially flat.

August Pending Sales:

Single Family August 2016 August 2015 % Change
Sales 6,052 4,863 24.4%
Median Price $375,000 $365,000 2.7%
  • Pending sales have been up 41 of last 42 months
Condominium August 2016 August 2015 % Change
Sales 2,095 1,789 17.1%
Median Price $342,000 $335,450 2.0%
  • Pending sales have been up for 12 of last 13 months

“In terms of buyer activity, this market is going against most seasonal norms with the winter, and now the summer, continuing at the same pace we typically see in a busy spring,” said 2016 MAR President Annie Blatz, branch executive at Kinlin Grover Real Estate on Cape Cod. “With the number of homes for sale continuing to be down, we see no obvious reason for pending sales to slow in the coming months.”

REALTOR® Market and Price Confidence Indexes:

Confidence Index August 2016 August 2015 % Change
Market 77.83 74.16 5.0%
Price 68.91 68.61 0.4%
  • The Realtor® Market Confidence Index was up for the 18th straight month
  • The Realtor® Price Confidence Index was down or essentially flat for the eighth time in 13 months
  • Measured on a 100-point scale, a score of 50 is the midpoint between a “strong” (100 points) and a “weak” (0 points) market condition    

“This ongoing buyer demand is keeping the Market Confidence Index up, but Realtors® continue to feel less optimistic about prices as the Index is essentially flat compared to the same time as last year,” said Blatz.

Monthly ‘Hot Topic’ Question:

The August “Hot Topic” question asked if the upcoming presidential election is having an impact on their buyer and seller clients. Of those Realtors® who responded, 75 percent reported that they are seeing no impact on their buyer and seller clients. Twenty-one percent of those who responded reported that the upcoming election is either having a significant negative impact (3%) or a negative impact (18%). Five percent of Realtors reported the upcoming election is having either a significant positive impact (2%) or a positive impact (3%).

“While the upcoming election is dominating the news and social media, if it’s going to have an impact on buyer and seller clients, it hasn’t happened yet,” said Blatz. “Presidential elections can inject uncertainty into the market and it might still happen, but buyer and sellers continue to be focused on buying and selling.”

About the Data Sets:

The tracking of signed purchase and sales agreements (also called “pending sales”) provide reliable information about where the real estate market is heading in coming months.

A pending sale or a sale “under agreement” happens when the buyer and seller agree on the terms of the sale of a home and have a signed purchase and sale agreement, but have yet to close and be recorded as such.  MAR is the only organization, which compiles this statewide information from Multiple Listing Services each month.

Monthly pending (or under agreement) data and closed sales data comes from the three Realtor®-affiliated Multiple Listing Services in Massachusetts. They are the Berkshire County Multiple Listing Service, Cape Cod & Islands Association of Realtors® Multiple Listing Service, Inc.; and MLS Property Information Network, Inc. The data is compiled by ShowingTime/10K and updated each month. As a result, previous data may change after the reports have been run.

The REALTOR® Index Methodology – The Massachusetts Realtor® Market Confidence Index (RMCI) and Price Confidence Index (RPCI) are based on monthly responses from a random sampling of Massachusetts Association of Realtors® members on the state of the housing market.  More specifically, the survey asks members two basic questions pertaining to the real estate business in their market area in Massachusetts.

  • How would you describe the current housing market?
  • What are your expectations of home prices over the next year?

In addition to these standard questions, the survey each month includes one wildcard question that changes each month and is based on an industry hot topic.

The RMCI is calculated in the following way.  Respondents indicate whether conditions are, or are expected to be “strong” (100 points), “moderate” (50 points), and “weak” (0 points).  The results are the average score for each question.  A score of 50 is the threshold between a “strong” and a “weak” condition.  Similarly, the question about home prices over the next year (Realtor® Price Confidence Index) is calculated using five categories: “Rise 0-5%” (75 points), “Rise 5%+” (100 points), “Level” (50 points), “Fall 0-5%” (25 points), and “Fall >5%” (0 points).

About the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS®:

Organized in 1924, the Massachusetts Association of Realtors® is a professional trade organization with more than 22,000+ members.  The term Realtor® is registered as the exclusive designation of members of the National Association of Realtors® who subscribe to a strict code of ethics and enjoy continuing education programs.

by Eric Berman – eberman (at) marealtor (dot) com – 781-839-5507 | Sep 13, 2016


Massachusetts RealEstateRama is an Internet based Real Estate News and Press Release distributor chanel of RealEstateRama for Massachusetts Real Estate publishing community.

RealEstateRama staff editor manage to selection and verify the real estate news for State of Massachusetts.


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