Lake Norman & Charlotte Market Values 

The Time to Buy is Now!

Charlotte is the second fasting growing city in the country. North Carolina is the sixth fastest growing state. Home sales activity in the greater Charlotte market continues to be quite strong in terms of both dollars and units. The areas on and around Lake Norman in particular have seen a strong increase in activity and prices coupled with a major decrease in inventory on hand. Multiple offers are no longer uncommon. This is still considered an affordable housing market and there are still good values to be found, but competition for good properties is strong in this Sellers' market. Homes in popular neighborhoods sell very fast.

The number of Lake Norman waterfront homes sold in 2016 was up 20.9% from 2015. 468 waterfront homes* on Lake Norman sold for an average closing price of $856,753
*Not counting mobiles. Includes some properties that do not allow docks or have "seasonal" water levels. Properties self-described as "waterfront."

October 2017: 

For the entire greater Charlotte MLS region:

When compared to the same month last year: New listings were up 3.1%. Pending sales were up 15.4%.  Closed sales were up 2.6%. Average sales price was up 4.2% and inventory of homes for sale was down 18.9%. Total Days on Market were down 18.3% from the same month last year.

For the Lake Norman area only:

When compared to the same month last year: New listings up 23.9%. Pending sales were up 21.6%. Closed sales were up 11.21. Average sales price was up 18.3% and inventory of homes for sale was down 9.81%. 
Days on market were down 1.0% from the same month last year.

Based on information from the Carolina Multiple Listing Services, Inc. 

*The percentage of properties sold recently that were either Foreclosures or Short Sales was 1.4%. This has become such an insignificant percentage of total home sales that it is not worthy of much discussion.

Summarizing 2016

The Charts below tell the story.
2016 stats show a continued strong market with all indicators up: more sales, increased prices, lower inventory, fewer days on market, and fewer distressed sales. The average sales price was 96.2% of list price.

   

 

   

 

   

These stats are for the entire greater Charlotte market. Sub-sections of the market, such as Lake Norman waterfront, can have significantly different data.
Based on information from the Carolina Multiple Listing Services, Inc. for the entire MLS area.

Growing:  Census data for 2000 to 2010 verifies what we all sensed. The greater Charlotte urban area (which includes the Lake Norman area) grew by 64.6%.  That's the largest increase in the country for areas with one million people or more. Surrounding counties also saw large population growth. This area continues to be one of the most popular destinations for people moving by choice.

There are always some home sellers that are motivated to deal for one reason or another. Buyers who are educated and have cash or loan pre-approvals and are able to close quickly without contingencies will get the best deals. The opportunities are still very good for home buyers in the Charlotte area who work with an experienced Exclusive Buyers' Agent that knows the market.

Mortgage interest rates are still low! 

While rates change daily, Lenders are still reporting rates just over 4.0% on 30-year fixed rate conforming mortgages. Lots of mortgage options and terms are being offered. We can suggest lenders that can explain all of your options and will compete for your business. Don't delay. Rates are on the rise.

Charlotte is a year-round housing market. With over 200 of the Fortune 500 companies having major offices in Charlotte, there are always people being transferred in and out of the area. Buyers can usually find a decent selection of homes for sale at all times of the year, but like everywhere, the inventory of available homes peaks just before schools let out. With the peak in inventory comes a much bigger increase in the number of buyers competing for the best properties. There is no one best time to be a buyer.

How Is The Charlotte Area Different Than Where You are Now? 

Depending on where you are moving from, you may or may not find the housing market here different from what you are accustomed to.  As your Buyer's Agents, we will guide you through all the options available to you.

  • Few basements.  "Up North" because of the frost line you need to dig deep for footings so you might as well dig a bit more and have a basement. We have no frost line to speak of. Because of the heavy clay soil here and the effort & expense to properly waterproof basements, you will find that only a small percentage of homes have them (about 13%.) They exist where the slope of the land requires it. Where they exist, they are almost always walk-out (or, daylight) basements meant to be finished to the same standards as the rest of the house. Basement square footage is not inexpensive here like it is in many other states. It is usually cheaper & more desirable to add extra above-ground space.
  • Smaller lots.  Because of the rapid growth and land-use concerns, you will find that most new development is on lots of a quarter acre or less. Buyers looking for "acreage" are going to find fewer choices, mostly older or more expensive homes, and usually farther out from the employment centers. Lots of a quarter acre or more in a neighborhood are often referred to as "large." 
  • Subdivisions.  A huge percentage of newer construction is going to be in the form of subdivisions. The trend is for large developments with small lots and more emphasis on community common areas such as green spaces, neighborhood pools, tennis courts, and other shared amenities. Most newer developments will have home owners' associations (HOAs) that over-see maintenance of common areas and enforce the recorded covenants and restrictions. These restrictions are not to be feared. They are, for the most part, logical and protect home values.
  • Mostly Newer.  Because this area has seen explosive growth in just the last 20 years, the majority of homes for sale are less than 25 years old -- especially in the Lake Norman area and other popular suburbs surrounding the city. If you are looking for an older home "with character" like is found in older cities, you will find a very limited (and, therefore, expensive) selection in this area. There are a few popular pockets of gorgeous older homes in the city of Charlotte, but their limited numbers make them priced accordingly. You might find it odd, but in the suburbs, you will hear people refer to homes built in the early 90's as "older."
  • No Contingencies. Virtually no Sellers in this market will consider an offer that is contingent on the sale of another home unless that home is already under contract and has passed inspections and appraisal. Our NC contract includes an all-encompassing Due Diligence Period and does not have separate loan, inspection, or appraisal contingencies. The contract strongly favors the Buyer. However, if you need to have the funds from the sale of your current home to purchase your next home, you need to get it under contract before making an offer here. Read about Timing Your Move.

Thinking About Lake Norman Waterfront? 

Waterfront homes sell for a premium in all markets and the greater Charlotte market is no exception. Lake Norman ranks as the number one lakefront market in the entire southeast. However, there are still decent values on waterfront property to be had. The key is to work with an agent that really understands the market and be prepared to act quickly. We monitor the entire waterfront segment very closely. Contact us today if you'd like assistance finding the best waterfront deals in this market.

Just to give you some idea:
The "average" waterfront stick-built home with a dock/pier on Lake Norman sold in 2016 south of the State Park was: a 4-bedroom, 3.5-bath, 3727 square foot home built it 1993 and sold for $894,854.

There are very few decent vacant waterfront lots available any more. We are seeing a marked increase in the price of waterfront homes being bought as tear-downs. It is fairly common now for buyers at Lake Norman to spend $500,000 to $800,000 on a property that includes an older home or mobile that they plan to tear-down to build a new waterfront home. We have had clients spend up to $1 million for a property and tear-down the existing home.

We'll find you the best deal...

...it's rarely a foreclosure. No matter what you are looking for we can help. Your first home? Your dream home? Down-sizing?  Bare land to build on?  Condo or townhome? Investment property? No matter what your budget, we will find you the best deals available anywhere in the greater Charlotte or Lake Norman market. We can tell you the average prices of homes sold in your target areas. For example, if you want to buy a 4-bedroom, 2.5 bath house with a 2-car garage off-water in Huntersville but you can only afford to spend $275,000 (10.2% below the market average), we will show you all of your options but you may need to prioritize your wish-list. Expect there to be trade-offs in every budget. Larger lots, for instance, can greatly increase the cost of a home in this market where land is at a premium. When we meet to start seeing homes, we will provide you with much more detailed market information specific to your home preferences. We will work with you to ensure you have all the information you need to make an informed buying decision and an investment that will appreciate. No matter how long it takes, we will find the house that is "meant-to-be" yours!