MAUMEE — As northwest Ohio transitions to fall — normally the start of the seasonal housing market slowdown — a busy September proves the market is retaining the summer’s heat.

With stronger buyer activity in the market this year and the constrained supply of homes for sale, speedy sales and multiple offer situations are likely to remain a common occurrence and will keep the housing market hot even when the weather is cooling.

While mortgage rates remain near record lows, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported that lending standards are tightening, which makes it a bit more difficult for some buyers to qualify for a loan.

At the same time, unemployment remains substantially higher than a year ago due to COVID-19. Despite all this, buyers are out in full force this fall, showing amazing resilience in the middle of a pandemic.

With the stock indexes at or near record highs, mortgage rates remain near record lows. All signs consistently point to a lively fall housing market.

Northwest Ohio Realtors (NOR) has more than 1,800 members dedicated to serving the needs of home sellers and buyers in northwest Ohio and the surrounding area, including Lucas, Wood, Fulton, Henry, Defiance, Williams, Hancock, Wyandot, Paulding and Putnam counties.

In northwest Ohio, new listings rose for the first time in months — compared to September 2019, new listings were up 6%.

As in August, closed sales continued to outpace September 2019 numbers, reflecting an increase of 16.6% (996 total) for September 2020.

This September, homes averaged 71 days on the market — a 11.3% decrease from the same time last year. Additionally, homes sold in the area are receiving an average of 100% of the listing price, up 2.1% from 2019.

In northwest Ohio, the median home price in September was $154,200 – up slightly from August 2020, and a substantial increase of 15.7% from September 2019 ($133,250). This continues to follow the national trend of rising prices identified by the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

Though inventory continues to wane, the sellers’ market remains strong as it has throughout 2020. NOR’s housing inventory at the end of September provides approximately four months of inventory — down one month from September 2019. Although NAR economists predicted this trend, it continues to impact the home buying process on both sides of the table.

Current market uncertainty may be based on effects of the upcoming elections and any seasonal resurgence of COVID-19. However, the healthy housing demand demonstrated by the September housing report will create significant tailwinds in the near term.

Comprehensive housing reports for Northwest Ohio can be found by visiting the NOR website — nworealtors.com.

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