Maryland Housing Market 2024: Trends & House Prices – Forbes

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The price of housing in Maryland seems to only go up.

Even with a slowing market this year, home prices are rising about 2.5% per quarter, says Joe Shaver, a realtor with Re/Max Realty Center in Olney, Maryland. “We were almost at 5% before the pandemic.”

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While housing inventory in Maryland has declined significantly this year, prices have increased and homes are often snapped up by buyers within a week of listing. Steady demand from nearby government workers and military personnel means there’s no indication that the housing market in Maryland will fall out of favor with buyers anytime soon.

Lenders are also rolling out buydown programs and incentives such as free refinancing should interest rates fall. Although many homes are still receiving offers above their listing price, potential homebuyers may not need much encouragement to make a move.

Current Housing Market in Maryland

Made up of 23 counties and Baltimore City, Maryland borders Washington D.C. and four states in the mid-Atlantic. The nation’s capital has a significant impact on the housing market here, Shaver says.

The region is home to major military installations, and with national elections happening every two years, there’s regular turnover in many government offices. As new workers arrive, they often look to Maryland for their homes.

The state is expected to add 178,000 new households through 2030, according to a Maryland Housing Needs Assessment & 10-Year Strategic Plan by the National Center for Smart Growth. Much of that growth will be in the greater Baltimore area and suburbs of Washington D.C. In addition to providing affordable homes, the state also needs to prioritize housing for low-income households, the plan said.

Maryland Housing Trends and Stats

While inventory is tightening, housing sales are brisk in Maryland with prices continuing to rise. Not surprisingly, some of the fastest growing markets are those in communities in or near the Baltimore or Washington D.C. metro areas.

Fewer Listings, Quicker Sales

Monthly listings in the state have dropped significantly in 2023, according to Maryland Realtors, a nonprofit membership association. It reports that, as of July 2023, there were 6,491 new listings for the year. That’s down from 9,900 last year at the same time.

Likewise, the state’s overall housing inventory is down as well. In 2022, the state had an inventory of 1.5 months, but that number was 1.4 months in July 2023.

So far this year, homes have only been on the market for about seven days before a sale turns pending. That’s one day faster than the median of eight days in 2022.

Real estate website Zillow said homes are selling even faster. As of July 2023, Zillow found homes were listed for a median of six days before their status moved to pending.

Many Homes Still Sell Above Asking Price

Having fewer homes for sale is one of the key reasons why property prices continue to climb. The average sales price in Maryland is up 3.2% this year to $486,385, according to Maryland Realtors.

In Baltimore, the July 2023 median price was far above the city’s five-year average. The Greater Baltimore Board of Realtors said the median price this summer was $290,000 while the five-year average is $266,980.

Statewide, many homes are selling for more than their list prices as well. According to Zillow, 53.2% of sales in June 2023 were above list price.

Maryland Realtors said the greatest year-over-year growth in average prices came from the following counties:

  • Dorchester County. 27.6%
  • Worcester County. 8.7%
  • Allegany County. 8.6%

Kent County was the only area to see a double-digit drop in prices. Average sales prices in this eastern shore county are down 27.1% year-over-year.

Statewide, the group’s data found properties are most expensive in Montgomery County. The average sales price there is $750,482. On the other end of the spectrum, bargain hunters may want to look in Allegany County where the average price is $163,256.

Real estate brokerage firm Redfin analyzed its data and identified these cities as the metros with the fastest growing prices in Maryland:

  • Elkridge. 28.8%
  • Montgomery Village. 27.1%
  • Cambridge. 23.6%
  • Ilchester. 22.4%
  • Annapolis. 21.8%

As for where buyers are most likely to pay above list price, Redfin said Perry Hall, Bel Air and Bel Air North have the most competitive markets.

Related: Mortgage Rate Forecast

Maryland Housing Market Predictions

Don’t expect the Maryland housing market to change anytime soon. Interest rates are expected to flatten which may introduce new buyers into the market, but what the market needs is more homes—not buyers.

Writing for The Baltimore Sun, land use and zoning attorney Tom Coale notes Maryland has built fewer than 15,000 housing units each year since 2008. At the same time, the state’s population has grown by 40,000 residents per year.

Even if there were more new construction homes available, many existing homeowners have low-interest mortgages or have paid off their home loans. That means, financially, there’s little incentive for these families to move.

The rest of the region will likely see the same dynamics at play, according to the July 2023 Mid-Atlantic Market Report from Maryland-based Bright MLS. In a press release, the real estate data company said, “The fall market in the Mid-Atlantic will be characterized by low inventory, stable or rising home prices and growing affordability challenges.”

Should You Buy or Sell In the Maryland Housing Market?

The Maryland housing market certainly has advantages for sellers who may be able to get top dollar for their home and complete a fast sale. However, if you want to remain in the area, expect to compete with many buyers for a new house.

It may be tempting for buyers to step back and wait for the housing market in Maryland to cool and mortgage interest rates to drop, but Shaver thinks that could be a financial mistake.

“While you’re waiting for the rates to go down, the value of homes continues to increase,” he says. Increased housing costs could offset any savings on interest payments.

Mortgage lenders in Maryland have introduced several programs intended to blunt the impact of high interest rates on the housing market. For instance, some have buydown programs in which buyers have lower payments for the first two years of their mortgage. Others are offering to refinance mortgages for free if rates should drop within a certain period.

Through the Maryland Mortgage Program, the state is also working to make homeownership more affordable and accessible. These government programs include fixed-rate mortgages, down payment assistance and partner matches. Borrowers must meet eligibility requirements although those are loosened should you purchase a home in a target area, such as Baltimore.

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