As buyers and sellers of Marshfield, Massachusetts real estate make plans for 2023, the local market continues to closely follow housing trends at the state level, and is likely to continue to do so. The South Shore housing market is cooling off
, with an almost 26% decrease in closed sales year-over-year in October. At the same time, the median sale price rose almost 7% in the same time period.
The greatest decrease in inventory has been for condominiums, which was down almost 38% compared to last year, while single-family properties were only down 9%. Some sellers were receiving sale prices below the listing price in October, but not by much, with the average hitting 99.9% of list price for single-family properties. Still, this shows a downward trend compared to 2021 and much of 2022. Condominiums are, on average, still commanding sale prices above listing, but not by as much as at this same time a year ago.
National trends set the stage
Marshfield, MA real estate is not immune from factors driving the housing market
nationally, such as higher interest rates and inflation. Uncertainty has many homeowners holding back as they wait to see how the market will evolve, and previously-owned homes on the market have dropped to a 10-year low.
As 2023 unfolds, some experts expect rates to continue to rise by as much as a full percentage point on 30-year and 15-year mortgages, while there is some hope that they could begin to come back down by the end of the year. Regardless, any path forward regarding interest rates is expected to contribute to a slowing market, with home sales continuing to decline in 2023.
Experts also predict that median times to sale will continue to increase, as homes are no longer taken off the market within days of listing. Going into 2023, that could result in homes remaining on the market twice or even three times as long as is currently being experienced.
However, all of this is also going to coincide with a leveling of home prices rather than a drop. Despite high interest rates, low inventory is expected to keep prices around where they are now or a little higher into the new year.
Statewide trends and local impacts
Median sale prices of Marshfield MA homes for sale have historically followed statewide trends, with the local market commanding higher prices. But changes in those prices closely mirror trends at the state level on a 12-month rolling average
. While the markets are not in perfect sync, the factors driving home sales across the state provide a good indication of the local market's heading.
The statewide housing inventory for October reached its lowest for the month since at least 2004
, and closed sales on single-family properties were down almost 22% statewide from October last year. For the same time period, closed sales for Marshfield, MA real estate fell 32%.
With homeowners living in Marshfield MA who locked in low interest rates in recent years unlikely to move out, it is unlikely there will be any significant changes to local housing inventory trends heading into 2023.
Timing the market
There is unlikely to be much benefit in attempting to time the market
for buyers looking for Marshfield MA homes for sale during 2023. The same applies to sellers who are not in a hurry to move. Regardless of which way prices go, it is unlikely that sale prices are going to shift significantly up or down. Median housing prices have fallen from mid-year record highs, but they now appear to be stabilizing.
Buyers looking at living in Marshfield MA can afford to take their time searching for the home that suits them, rather than feeling rushed to grab something before prices skyrocket, as was the case in recent years. Similarly, anyone on the fence about selling Marshfield, MA real estate can set aside some concern regarding whether selling now or in a few months will significantly affect the final sale price of their home.
However, those competing factors appear to be canceling one another out. Despite buyers being under less pressure to snap up homes and higher rates giving many buyers pause, low housing inventory is likely to continue creating situations with multiple bids, particularly for more desirable real estate.
Is Massachusetts in a housing bubble?
The rapid increase in prices over recent years has fueled bubble speculation, but the situation appears to be more inclined toward a slow correction than a sudden burst.
Most likely, median sale prices will continue to increase in 2023, possibly even reaching levels above 2022's highs, but they will get there gradually and continue to rise at a more predictable rate than in recent years.
Additionally, there does not appear to be any default crisis brewing, which means that there will be no sudden shocks to the market related to buyers who bought more than they could afford. The result of all these factors is expected to look like 2023 seeing greater stability and more typical increases in property values than recent years, without a sudden swing the other way.
The best advice for living in Marshfield MA
Whether you are a buyer looking for Marshfield MA homes for sale, or a homeowner gauging the best approach for selling your Marshfield home, no amount of studying market statistics will ever give you the insights that experienced real estate agents, such as Jessica Tyler and The South Shore Team
, can provide. The guidance and understanding of the local market a qualified agent brings to a home sale can give you peace of mind even in uncertain times.