New Bern Community Real Estate Update

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The first report on the state of real estate was presented at the POA annual meeting on June 26 by Margaret Rose and Joy Harsen of Neuse Realty, Inc. Rose has been giving the Board updates for the past two years, and they decided to make a report part of the annual meeting agenda. In his introduction, President Larry Knapp stated, “the facts will not be sugarcoated in any way…”
Rose reported that in the five neighborhoods she tracks, all of which have amenities, there have been 97 units sold year to date, through June 23, with 16.5 percent of those being distressed (foreclosures or short sales). The chart shows the MLS data, year to date sold in neighborhoods with amenities.


Rose offered that an aging population and product and the fallout from the great recession were challenges common to all. With an aging population:

  • Some decisions are made by the estate.
  • Some decide to go the rental route and wait it out.
  • The product is aging and may be in question-able condition.

Fallout from The Great Recession includes lender tightening, appraiser caution to the extreme, and the overall housing condition in eastern NC feeder markets. While the nation is in a recovery, that process has been the slowest in the northeast, with the Mid-Atlantic States at a 1.37 percent price increase year-over-year, as reflected by this first quarter FHFA Regional Home Price Report.

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Harsen reviewed the historical performance of the local market: 651 units sold year to date in the entire area covered by the local Multiple Listing Service, of which 168 or 25.8 percent were distressed. She noted that if the trend continues the end of year sales will finish slightly up, as each year has since 2009.

Other salient statistics from the presentation:

Bar graph

  • Number of sales above $300,000: 80 of 651
  • Number of sales above $425,000: 20 of the 80
  • Median selling price: $155,000.
  • Percent of homes for sale in FH: 7.9 (normal is 7-10 percent)

Rose commented that our area, like 91 percent of the nation, is undervalued and we can expect annual appreciation to look like pre-bubble averages of 3.6 percent after stabilization.

The Board plans to ask other real estate firms to make presentations at future POA community meetings.


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