Newsletter:  September 2014
Maine Home Connection


"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened".
                                                           - Dr Seuss

Single family home sales in Maine, through August 30th, are up 7.3% compared to the first eight months of 2013.  The median home price has declined marginally and is now $173,000 versus $175,000 last year.
In Cumberland County, sales have actually slowed compared to 2013. Year-to-date volume is up 3.1% while the median selling price, contrary to the state-wide price, is up 1.6%.


When it comes to specific cities and towns, there is great variability is sales results.  For example in Portland, the state's largest market, sales of single family homes are down 2.8% while pricing is up 2.0%.  At the other end of the spectrum is Falmouth, where YTD sales are up 9.4% and pricing is up an extraordinary 16.6%.


In the middle is a community like Scarborough, where both sales volume and prices are basically flat in 2014 compared to 2013. To get results by your specific community, you can get details on our website.  Use the link Local Communities to get started.


National Results:

The graph below provides some insight into sales results by region across the country.  When considering the entire state's performance, Maine is doing well.

National Home Sales   

Each month we also track the percentage of homes under contract.  During the last three months this percentage has dropped from 15.8% to 14.5%.  This trend has also continued in Cumberland County, with pending contracts dropping from 29.3% to 24.6%.  Additionally, all of these results are lower than the same time period of 2013.    


As always, if you would like more detailed information on a community that interests you, let us know and we can create a customized report.  

Portland's Eastern Waterfront
Zoning Changes for Residential Use


More development could be coming to Portland. CPB2, the current (purchased 2 years ago) owners of the historic Portland Company property at 58 Fore St have filed an application with the city to rezone the parcel, taking the first step in redeveloping a prime piece of real estate on the city's eastern waterfront.


The 10-acre Portland Company complex is located just east of Ocean Gateway (not far from out office) and has featured a variety of manufacturing businesses during its 140 year history. Most importantly, it also includes over 1,000 feet of deep-water ocean frontage.


Portland Eastern Waterfront

Phinneas Sprague, the property's former owner, made it known that he was vetting potential buyers to ensure that they understood the city's long-range plan for the site.  Accordingly, the current zoning application includes a request to transform the property from a special industrial zone to a mixed zone.  The current Eastern Waterfront Special Use zone does not allow for residential development.


On the site are 14 historic buildings that were built between 1845 and 1950.

Consumer Confidence Improves 
Highest Level in 7 Years


Consumers are feeling much better and more confident in recent months. The consumer confidence index in August rose to the highest mark in nearly seven years. Such a trend could lead to improvement in home sales and boost demand for retail commercial spaces.  


Numerically, the index hit 92.4. The last time it was that high was right before the financial market crisis in October 2007 when the unemployment rate was very low at 4.7% (versus today's 6.1%).  

Consumer Confidence


The index, however, is still shy of 100, where at least half of Americans would be saying that the economy is generally moving in the right direction.  


For home buying, it is not only about financial capacity and mortgage rates. Confidence also matters.  People need to feel they will be better off in the future in order to make a major expenditure.  The index that captures only the future expectations was 90.9 - also nearing the crucial 100 level.

About Maine Home Connection


Thank you for your continued support. As with everything we do, we constantly strive to set a standard of professionalism uncommon in our industry. Our ongoing goal is to provide value to our clients and create relationships that endure the current transaction.

As you consider your future real estate needs, or know of someone who could benefit from our services, it would be our privilege to be of assistance.

Laura & Michael Sosnowski
Maine Home Connection
Direct: 207.517.3100


We hope you enjoy our current Newsletter. 

Although slowing down somewhat, the Maine real estate market is still in better shape than it has been in a very long time - and compares favorably with the rest of the country.

Included in this issue is a brief update on sales through August 30th.  If you would like a customized report of any neighborhood or town, just let us know.
Featured Properties 

Portland: $359,000
Deering Neighborhood
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Falmouth: $399,000 
Close to Ocean
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Neighborhood Spotlight
South Portland

South Portland is the second largest real estate market in southern Maine. Through August home sales of 237 units are up 8.7% while the median price of $220,000 is also up 3.5% YTD.  Both results are better than statistics for the entire state.

In 2014 only 2 properties with "owned" waterfront have been sold, at a median price of $655,500.  In 2013 there were 4 such sales at a price of $749,950.

Similarly, the market for waterfront condos has not been as strong in  2014, with only 5 sales this year compared to 8 in 2013. 


South Portland Maine | Real Estate

Most of the sales activity this year has occurred in the price range of $300,000 or less. In 2014 there has only been 7 sales in the price range above $500,000 and zero above $1,000,000. In 2013 there were 10 sales above $500,000 and 1 above $1,000,000.

For more info, visit South Portland.
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A race is on in NYC to build the tallest condo building.  The same thing is happening in large metro areas around the world. 


For the full article, visit the WSJ at Sky High Condo Buildings.  

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Thinking of Selling
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