In 2023, the housing market faced significant challenges, extending the adverse trends observed at the close of 2022. It evolved into a historically challenging period for prospective homebuyers, marked by the lowest affordability levels ever recorded. Traditional seasonal patterns were disrupted, with the absence of the anticipated spring homebuying season. Throughout the year, inventory remained exceptionally low, contributing to a substantial decline in sales.
So what happened? In short: Record mortgage rates, high inflation, and persistently high housing and rental prices. But there was a lot more to it as well.
In Maine, the number of homes sold declined dramatically for the second consecutive year as only 13,771 single-family transactions were completed. This represented a drop of 18.8% from 2022, following a similar decline in 2021 of 17.7%. Median selling prices continued to rise and reached a record at $360,000, a 7.5% increase over 2022. Prices did moderate over the second half of the year as the impact of high mortgage rate had a significant impact.
Michael, along with his wife Laura, is co-owner of Maine Home Connection, an independent real estate company located in Portland. Maine. Together they started the brokerage from scratch with a new vision of what a company could look like if it focused completely on the needs of our clients and our agents.