Marion Filley's Closing Comments: Dec. 19

For the first time this year, we had a second straight month of sales lower than the previous year. While the drop was substantial, 29%, it was somewhat offset by the 29% ($185,000) gain in median price. The average also rose by close to 16% (over $120,000). As expected, inventory dropped significantly as we enter into the holiday season. However, it currently stands at the lowest Dec. 1 level since 2009. The average price remains high due in part to a single listing, and despite other $3-million listings going off the market.

As noted above, we have seen two lower sales months for the first time this year. However, total sales are still up 13.5% over 2012. The median, while $89,000 (12.3%) ahead of last year, is still more than $125,000 below the year-end mark of 2006. The average sale is now 13% up from this time last year, but like the median, trails 2006 results by $222,000. Overall sales for the year in single family are now at almost $212 million, an increase of about 28% over last year.

Whether the last quarter will end up outselling 2012, we already know that the trend of the last two months will be reversed in December, and barring highly unlikely circumstances, we will exceed the 250 houses sold in 2006. This is a far cry from the 333 level attained in 2004 and 2005 — or to look at it another way, from the 136 sales in 2009. It also looks as if it is unlikely the number of houses under $700,000 sold this year will exceed last year and possibly will fall below 100. A stress on the Wilton market for next year will be the FHA loan maximum limit being cut by over $105,000 to $601,450. By and large, despite some shaky moments this year, the market seems to have settled and hopefully will continue to do so moving forward.