Total new-home closings: 1,842
The good: New homes compete well with existing properties by falling closely in line with their average pricing.
The bad: While unemployment fell in most leading markets year over year in March 2015, this area saw an increase of 0.7%, bringing it to 6.1% (above the national average of 5.5%).
The bottom line: While this market put up an impressive number of new-home closings relative to its population in 2014, indications are that it may have peaked along the way.
While the new-home market in Greenville posted strong results in 2014—especially for an area with fewer than 1 million in population—in early 2015 it showed signs of leveling. Annualized permits for single-family homes trended slowly upward after April 2014, and then peaked in September 2014, at 1,771, before leveling off to 1,565 in March. Meanwhile, the share of single-family dwellings among all new-home sales fell by 12% year over year in March to 73%, despite the average new-home sales price falling at $189,000—well within the market range with the most buying activity at $100,000 to $200,000. With the median list price among all single-family listings (new and existing) coming in at $169,900 in June 2015, it’s difficult to say why the share of new single-family homes eroded slightly in early 2015, but with year-to-date single-family permits rising year over year in March by 9%, the second half of the year still holds potential.