Charlotte housing market sees spark of recovery

by: Scott Wickersham Updated:


CHARLOTTE, N.C. - For years now, home buyers made the demands and desperate sellers had to agree if they wanted to close the deal.

New numbers show the field is leveling out and maybe soon could give the advantage to sellers.

Becky Payton is trying to spruce up her home for sale in south Charlotte.

 “(I’m) power washing the deck and fencing,” Payton said.

It's been on the market for a year now and she's hoping a good cleaning will get it sold, so she can retire to Surfside Beach, S.C.

She describes the past year with one word: “Disheartening.”

New numbers out this week give Payton hope.

“We feel we have finally hit a recovery,” said Jennifer Frontera with the Charlotte Regional Realtors Association.

Data shows the housing market has gone from having 14 months of home inventory waiting to be sold down to six months.

Closings in the Charlotte area went from 1,900 in October 2011 to 2,600 this October. The average number of days a home took to sell dropped from 167 to 149.        

“When people see homes not sitting vacant it makes the whole neighborhood do better. When prices start to increase it makes people feel like they can sell their home,” Frontera said.

The average sale price is up over last year by 5 percent or $10,000. That creates urgency for buyers and is great news for sellers.

Payton has noticed a difference.

“The market is picking up and I’m having more showings,” she said.

It could mean her retirement can begin soon.

 “I can move to the beach,” Payton said.

Eyewitness News spoke to a Realtor on Friday who said he sold a home in 24 hours recently -- something he hasn't seen in years.

One thing is working against the recovery. After losing money on so many foreclosures, banks are making it much harder for people to get a loan for a new home.