The April numbers are out and it’s the first month of stats that began and ended under our stay-at-home order. Real estate is considered an “essential industry” with some restrictions. Open houses are no longer happening, and probably won’t be for a while, but showings have continued and people are still buying homes. Condos? Not so much.
Let’s start with the headline. The median sales price for all properties in New Orleans was $310,000 in April. That’s a record high and up 9% from April 2019.
Does that mean your home is worth more now than ever? Not really, and that’s due to what’s going on right now in the condo market. The number of condo sales in New Orleans dropped 55% from last April. Since the median price of condos is lower than single family homes, and since so few of them sold, the overall price increased as a result of the type of properties that sold.
You don’t need to be Colombo to figure out why condos aren’t selling. A large percentage of condo buyers are out-of-towners buying a second home. Thanks to the pandemic, they can’t get to New Orleans to look at properties, and the economic downturn has everybody holding off on unnecessary purchases.
The rest of the stats show a market where sellers are waiting until better times to sell their homes, with new listings down significantly from last month and year over year.
There still are buyers in New Orleans, so properly priced homes hitting the market are selling, but at much lower numbers. The number of closed sales in April was the lowest recorded since January 2015.
As we head into May, our real estate market is about what you’d expect in these unprecedented times. Sellers are waiting for a better and healthier time to put their homes on the market. Buyers are still looking, but they’re understandably hesitant and the market for second homes New Orleans is all but gone right now. This should be creating a pent up demand to both buy and sell. When is that going to happen? You’ll have to ask Dr. Fauci.