Supply and Demand Imbalance Persists in New Hampshire Real Estate Market

Despite the transition to spring, the New Hampshire real estate market is still facing challenges when it comes to supply and demand. According to Joanie McIntire, president of the New Hampshire Association of Realtors (NHAR), there may be an increase in listings as the season progresses, but it won’t be enough to ease the demand.

The term “months supply” is used to measure the availability of single-family homes and residential condos/townhouses. The average supply is typically four to five months, indicating a balanced market. However, New Hampshire has been experiencing a shortage, with only 1-2 months of supply since 2020. In January, the supply of houses stood at 1.3 months, while the supply for condos was 1.4 months.

Efforts are being made to address this issue through the easing of zoning restrictions. The NHAR is working with elected officials to allow for expanded development, which is seen as the best hope for creating a more balanced market. However, these efforts have faced opposition from certain communities, like Durham, who fear the negative impact of changes in local zoning ordinances.

Increasing the number of accessory dwelling units (ADUs) is one potential solution to increase housing stock. A proposed bill, HB 1291, seeks to allow for the construction of two ADUs per property, up from the current limit of one. While controversial, this proposal provides some flexibility for towns to implement the requirement.

The New Hampshire Housing and Finance Authority is also hosting a Homeownership Conference in March, focusing on the current housing landscape and strategies for increasing inventory and affordability.

Governor Chris Sununu has highlighted the positive impact of the $100 million InvestNH state housing program, which aims to bring 25,000 new housing units online by 2024. The program has seen an 18% increase in permits issued for residential construction, with 41% of those permits being for multifamily housing projects. The program has already delivered 129 new units, 88% of which are considered affordable housing.

Despite these efforts, the median prices for houses and condos continue to rise. In January, the median price for a house was $445,000, an 8.5% increase from the previous year. The median price of a condo was $425,000, up 25%. Rockingham County remains the most expensive for single-family homes, while Carroll County has the highest condo median.

As the real estate market in New Hampshire continues to grapple with a lack of supply, efforts to increase inventory and affordability remain crucial. Balancing the interests of different communities and exploring innovative solutions will be essential in addressing the ongoing supply and demand imbalance.

FAQ Section:

1. What is the current state of the real estate market in New Hampshire?
The New Hampshire real estate market is currently facing challenges in terms of supply and demand. Despite the transition to spring, there is still a shortage of available properties.

2. What is “months supply” and how does it relate to the real estate market?
“Months supply” is a term used to measure the availability of single-family homes and residential condos/townhouses. It indicates the number of months it would take to sell the existing inventory. A balanced market typically has an average supply of four to five months.

3. What has been the supply situation in New Hampshire since 2020?
New Hampshire has been experiencing a shortage of housing supply since 2020. The supply of houses stood at 1.3 months in January, while the supply for condos was 1.4 months.

4. What is being done to address the supply issue in New Hampshire?
Efforts are being made to address the supply issue by easing zoning restrictions and allowing for expanded development. The New Hampshire Association of Realtors (NHAR) is working with elected officials to create a more balanced market. However, some communities, like Durham, have opposed these changes due to concerns about the impact on local zoning ordinances.

5. How can the number of housing units be increased?
One potential solution to increase housing stock is to increase the number of accessory dwelling units (ADUs). A proposed bill, HB 1291, seeks to allow for the construction of two ADUs per property, up from the current limit of one.

6. What initiatives are being taken to address inventory and affordability?
The New Hampshire Housing and Finance Authority is hosting a Homeownership Conference in March, focusing on strategies for increasing inventory and affordability in the current housing landscape. Governor Chris Sununu has also highlighted the positive impact of the $100 million InvestNH state housing program, which aims to bring 25,000 new housing units online by 2024.

7. Are median prices for houses and condos increasing?
Yes, the median prices for houses and condos in New Hampshire continue to rise. In January, the median price for a house was $445,000, an 8.5% increase from the previous year. The median price of a condo was $425,000, up 25%.

Definitions:
Months supply: A term used to measure the availability of single-family homes and residential condos/townhouses. It indicates the number of months it would take to sell the existing inventory.
Accessory dwelling units (ADUs): Self-contained living units within a larger residential property. They are typically smaller and separate from the main dwelling unit, providing additional housing options.

Suggested Related Links:
New Hampshire Association of Realtors
New Hampshire Housing and Finance Authority
Office of the Governor of New Hampshire