BatesRealEstateReport Correctly Predicted July Market

David Bates / August 26, 2011-12:21 pm

On July 21, the BatesRealEstateReport predicted that July would be the best closings month for real estate sales year to date.

Yesterday, the major media outlets in Boston confirmed the correctness of that prediction. The Boston Globe: “Mass. home sales up first time in 6 months.” The Globe noted that the Warren Group reported an increase in home closings of 7 percent and that the Massachusetts Association of Realtors, which tracks sales in a smaller geographic area than the Warren Group, reported an increase in home sales of 14 percent.

Various articles proposed a variety of reasons for the increase, including the end of the government credits in June 2010, the newfound reasonableness of sellers, the increased activity of foreign investment and people getting out of the stock market and into real estate, to name a few. Whatever the reason or reasons for the uptick in sales, this blog was able to accurately predict the uptick in closings. As we have written previously, real estate transactions follow a very natural progression: First come showings, then there is property going under agreement and finally there are closings. As a result, any significant change in the showing requests will naturally result in a similar change in the closings 30-60 days later. The excellent showing months of May (+11 percent) and June (+11 percent), clearly meant that closings would be up in July. Because we are the only source that follows and reports changes in showing requests for Massachusetts real estate, we were able to see the change in closings coming.

The Globe quoted famed real estate analyst Karl Case, who said the market is still “extremely shaky.” What does this blog think will happen in August? MA-PASS, the firm that processes hundreds of thousands of showing requests for Greater Boston real estate agents, communicated to us that July showings were up versus July 2010 (+6%). While the number of listings in MA-PASS’ system in July 2011 is indeterminately different from July 2010, this blog notes the momentum of the excellent showing months of May, June and July versus the same months in 2010. We predict that August will be another excellent month for Massachusetts home sale closings versus August 2010.