Hi Everybody! I want to tell you about the ten things that I love about Bethlehem. If you’re thinking about moving here, it’s a great place to live!
#10- It’s close to Philadelphia which is about an hour and a half away. New York City is almost two hours away. And the Poconos where we can go skiing and have fun in the mountains is just about forty-five minutes north of here. But still there are lots of rural spaces all around town.
#9 – It’s a great place to live with a good cost of living and plentiful jobs
#8 – You can’t miss the restaurant scene and the beer scene here in Bethlehem.
#7 – there is lots of music and the arts scene is really cool
#6 – Because of the universities and colleges there is a great academic vibe throughout town
#5 – There is always fun places to go and exercise outside
#4 – Main Street! Spending the day on Main Street in Bethlehem is always a great pastime. It’s fun to visit all of the shops, enjoy really wonderful food in fabulous restaurants and just watch the world go by
#3 – Bethlehem is filled with gorgeous architecture
#2 – The Historic District as well as the City’s history cannot be beat
Today, I’m going to review the March 2020 Real Estate market reports for the Lehigh Valley. These numbers include the time that the Corona virus started in our area and when many of us were told to stay at home.
First thing to talk about is new listings that came on the market. As you can see in 2019 there were 959 listings that came on to the market compared to the 722 of March 2020. That resulted in a whopping -24.7% change! What this mean to you as a home buyer is that there are less properties to look at in your price range and you have more competition with other active buyers looking to purchase. As a seller this means that the market is ripe for your to LIST YOUR HOME WITH ME to get it sold. As a seller you can count on having multiple offers if your house is in good condition and priced right.
Next up is closed sales or properties that have SOLD! You see that the number for 2019 shows that 609 properties sold last year in March. This year only 554 properties sold. Which produced another change of -9.0%. For both the buyer & seller this proves that inventory is low which has caused the numbers to drop. This is not a good indication of the pandemic because the majority of these sales had been in the works about 45 days before they closed in march.
The next slide shows you the length of time that a house is on the market until it gets tagged as SOLD. You’ll see that the days on market has decreased 20.4% to 43 days on market. This time last year it was 54 days on market. The number is a refection of the lack of inventory and the level of competition. There are a lot of buyer in the market with out enough inventory to choose from. One tip that I would give a buyer is be sure that you’re pre-approved for a mortgage before you go looking. You need to be ready to make an offer as quickly as you can and without a pre-approval you won’t be able to write an offer.
The average sales price has risen by 6.5% which is a great thing if you’re a seller. The new average is $238,350 up from 4223,812 last year. As a buyer rising prices is just more proof that the market is hot and you have to make a decision quicker than later. It also means that there isn’t much room for negotiation if prices are rising.
The next slide hasn’t changed much over the last 5 years. The percentage of the list price received by a seller is now at 98.7%. Over the last five years this number has always been in the 97+% range. Good for sellers and a tough negotiation for buyers. But there are
The next slide shows us that the inventory is shrinking. This is a clear indication of the affect that the virus is having on the market. Because we have had the shelter-in-place order and real estate is not considered essential at this point in time, many sellers have been sitting on the sideline which has resulted in the 36.5% reduction in inventory.
The lack of inventory is told in another way….The months supply of inventory. At this point in time we have 1.4 months supply of inventory if we continue to sell at the current rate. The inventory is down by 41.7%. In march of 2018 and 2019 we had 2.4 months supply. This is another clear indication that the pandemic is having an effect on the real estate market.
If you are interested to know what your home is worth, please contact me today for your free consultation. We can have our appointment virtually so that you don’t have to leave the house, but you’ll be able to get the information and answers that you’re looking for.
At the first major intersection is a mural by a local artist named Matt Halm. His mural is appropriately called “Southbound” and today we’re going to start on the southside of town.
Right around the corner is “Steelworker” by a collective of local artists named, Dripped On The Road. The work pays homage to the men and women who worked in Bethlehem Steel plant for generations. The artist group is lead by Lehigh University grad, named Denton Burrows.
And just up the street is a work by Joseph Iacona. It’s called “Southside Proud”. His work speaks to the community of sharing and why citizens are proud to live on the southside of the City of Bethlehem.
And around the side of Taylor Street, The Bonn Place Brewing Company is wrapped in a beautiful mural painted by local artist Amy Perdue. And as the camera moves turns the corner, you’ll see other artwork (by Denton Burrows) that pays homage to brewing, festivities, fun, community and just having a good time.
Up on Hayes Street is a mural painted by Ramiro Davaro-Comas. This entire mural was painted on the flat side of a building, but if you’ll notice up towards the top it appears that there is a roof line with someone peeking out of a window; all of which don’t exist. The artist’s use of trompe l’oeil is truly magical.
Then we went up on Broad Street on the north side of town to see another beautiful mural by Matt Halm. It’s been painted on the side of Christmas City Veterinary Hospital. The mural curves around the corner of the building to include another fun surprise.
Back on the Southside at the corner of Hayes Street is a traditional phone booth which has been painted brightly and beautifully by Devyn Leonor Briggs. Then over on Third and New Street is another mural by Devyn Briggs. The mural reflects “a desire to develop a community that embraces economic opportunity with cultural diversity as a foundation.”
Up on the street on the side of Café The Lodge, is “Calma” by Pau Quintanajornet. This artist is from Chile and was raised in Germany. Her work of art was completed in Pau’s signature style while highlighting Café The Lodge’s mission which is focused on mental health recovery.