By Doug Holmes, contributing editor | The real estate market in Charleston continues to rage on.
Buying activity was at unprecedented levels through the November to January months, where we normally see a bit of a slowdown. 2016 will surely set many records. New construction is booming and over 40 percent of what we currently have under contract is new construction.
The end of the year numbers are in and we had a great 2015.
- We sold 15,490 homes and condos for a 13.9 percent rise over 2014 and the third busiest year ever.
- Seven Multiple Listing Service (MLS) areas were up over 20 percent.
- Median sales price rose to an all time high of $235,000, which was 5.9 percent above 2014. That is a moderate gain in price, which is probably a good thing.
We are still recovering from the recession with the rest of the United States. My trend line back to 1991 shows that we are still undervalued a bit. That means there is still room for appreciation. Eight MLS areas had median prices that were up over 10 percent over 2014. Boeing is adding more buildings and seems very happy here in Charleston. Volvo noticed that and announced its plans for a plant here. (I just helped the guy in charge of building the Volvo plant find a place to live this past week.)
The software and IT industry is booming and earning Charleston the nickname of Silicon Harbor. New restaurants are opening every day and that is being noticed in foodie magazines everywhere. How long can it be before Top Chef comes to Charleston?
We were just ranked as the second hottest real estate market in the U.S. by Trulia and the second most moved-to city in the U.S. My sources tell me that the rental and commercial markets are booming as well. Things are good here in the Holy City.