For the past few years, Maine real estate has been a pretty sweet deal—for a whole lot of people. If you were selling your house, you benefited big-time from median house prices that skyrocketed an average of 25.7 percent during the pandemic, and that are still rising. If you wanted to buy your dream home in Maine, you enjoyed a rich number of attractive options that combined to make Maine one of the Top 2 most-moved-to states in the U.S.
So what happens now? What will the Maine real estate market look like in 2023? What specific things do you need to know about it—and how can you benefit from that knowledge? Let’s take a moment to see …
No Slow-Down Yet
Despite significant interest-rate increases by the Federal Reserve throughout 2022, the Maine real estate market seems largely to be shrugging them off.
“The market continues to be very strong and competitive,” Madeleine Hill, president of the Maine Association of Realtors, just told WABI-TV, the CBS news affiliate in Bangor. “I think what we’re seeing now is we’re working towards a balance.”
Ms. Hill went on to say that—while we DO need to continue to watch interest rates—those rates thus far have not had as negative an impact as some people last year had feared.
“It’s important for people to know that the mortgage rates are still historically lower than the average, which is over 8 percent. We’re not seeing those numbers yet,” Ms. Hill said. That, of course, is very good news for prospective buyers who may have feared mortgage rates that might have priced them out of the market. (In fact, mortgage rates in Maine actually FELL slightly last month.)
Continued Good News for Sellers
While the fluid state of interest rates has had SOME effect on the Maine real estate market, home sellers are so far experiencing more a “plateauing” than any sustained devaluing of their home’s worth. As just reported by the Portland Press Herald, the statewide median sales price for homes sold in November 2022 was $325,000, an 8.3 percent increase over the price in November 2021. November was the third consecutive month in which home sellers enjoyed a single-digit year-over-year price increase in the median sales price of a home. And while single-digit increases obviously aren’t as super-exciting as the double-digit price increases we experienced for 25 straight months through August 2022, they nevertheless point to the continued health and vigor of the market for sellers.
The Bottom Line
While no one can claim a fool-proof crystal ball—and the Maine real estate market definitely IS moderating from the up-up-up pattern we experienced for the past 3 years—Maine home buyers and sellers have every right to remain optimistic. The Federal Reserve has already announced that interest-rate hikes will be more modest through the rest of the year, bringing relief to everyone wishing to buy a home. And the interest-rate hikes that are now in the rearview mirror have assured home-buyers that they now have less competition for their dream home in Maine. Isn’t it time you discovered why so many folks want to live here?
When you wish to buy your dream home in Maine … sell one … or build one … we’re always here to help. Contact us today!
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