Vermont’s Real Estate Market is Changing

The age-old dilemma: Should you buy, or should you hold off? Should you sell, or should you wait?

Vermont’s real estate market is changing. Sales of homes over $1 million decreased in 2023 by 6.5% compared to the peak the year before. Buyers placed a bigger discount on homes that needed work due to high building costs and a shortage of contractors. Turn-key, well-presented and defensibly priced properties continued to go under contract sometimes with multiple offers, but not with the same frenzy as earlier.

The robust seller’s market we’ve seen over the past few years is subtly transforming as buyer power grows. Surging interest rates and global tensions have tempered demands that were once at a fever pitch during Covid. Despite this, prices remain steady, bolstered by lean inventory and supported by the stock market. However, buyers are approaching transactions with ever greater diligence, weighing price and conditions with a keener eye.  We’re not witnessing a downturn but a redefinition of market dynamics. 

As reported in the real estate newsletter, Inman News, economists and experts predict a more balanced housing market in 2024 across the US, with stable prices and lower mortgage rates–a pattern Vermont is expected to mirror as we move into the new year. 

The coming year offers a unique opportunity for those ready to navigate this new terrain with insight and adaptability.

Vermont's Real Estate Market Is Changing
Lower Inventory = Lower Sales? The number of homes sold is partly tied to inventory, with prices, interest rates, and the economy also playing roles. The chart above reflects a market shifting from a seller’s market to a more balanced market at the end of 2023.  411 units were sold in 2022 versus 401 units in 2023.

The Vermont real estate market is changing.
The chart (above) illustrates a surge in sales volume, which was accelerated by Covid, before reaching a point of stability.  For buyers, a stabilizing sales volume may indicate a less competitive market, potentially offering more time to make decisions and possibly more room for negotiation. For sellers, it suggests the need to price properties competitively, as the frenzied demand of previous years may no longer guarantee a quick sale at any price.

You, also, may want to read From Crosscurrents to a Turning Tide: LandVest Third Quarter 2023.