Local buyers and sellers of real estate now have a more powerful tool to bring them together, as Alleghany County is officially a part of the High Country Association of Realtors and the High Country Multiple Listing Service.
The addition was approved in late 2015. As of the second week of March the new expanded High Country MLS includes all realtor-represented real estate listings in Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, and Watauga counties.
That means more than 2,285 homes represented by a local realtor can be explored in the four-county area.
“We are excited about Alleghany being a part of our High Country Association of Realtors,” said Tim Carter, president of the High Country Association of Realtors. “Geographically this makes sense and will allow our clients to have wider variety of properties and agents to fulfill their real estate needs.”
Area real estate activity continues to show stability. According to the new expanded MLS, there were 102 homes worth $22.24 million sold in February. That’s a near mirror image from the same four counties last February, when 100 homes worth $22.52 million were sold.
Historically January and February combined are, compared to the other ten months of the year, the quietest period for real estate sales in the region. Last year 188 homes were sold in that span, the most then since 2007. That represented 11.1 percent of sales for the entire year.
So far in 2016, 215 homes have been sold by realtors.
Buyers market conditions powered the business. The median sold price in February – the midpoint at which half of all listings sold above and the other half below – was $175,000, the lowest for any month since May 2014 ($172,000).
The median sold price through the first two months of the year was $187,500.
Interest rates remain attractive, and are only slightly ahead of where they were a month ago. As of March 17, the fixed rate on a 30-year mortgage was 3.73 percent; it was 3.65 percent in early February.
A year ago, the rate averaged 3.86 percent.
The 15-year fixed rate last week was 2.99 percent, according to Freddie Mac. It was 3.10 percent a year ago
According to Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market, this is only the second mortgage rate increase this year, making them very attractive for the upcoming spring home-buying season.