SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Realtor Association of Pioneer Valley has released its latest report on home sales in Hampden, Hampshire, and Franklin counties for December 2022.

Home closings have decreased, but they’re still selling for more money compared to December 2021. There were 380 homes were sold in December of 2022, which is down 36.8% from December 2021.

(Realtor® Association of Pioneer Valley)

The median sale price for homes was $313,250, which is about 11.9% higher than last year of $279,950. The inventory of available homes that were for sale was down 19.1% from 592 homes for sale in December 2021, to 479 homes for sale in December of this year.

“What’s tough is that the inventory is down, I just checked it. There are only 9 houses on the market in Northampton right now there’s usually a lot higher than that. The sales are down the inventory is down and the prices are up and that’s competition there’s not a lot to pick from,” said David Murphy, owner of Murphy’s Realtors.

The average days on the market were up 14.2% from 37 days on the market in December 2021, up to 42 days. Real estate typically slows down in the winter but this year, according to that new report, we’re seeing something more drastic.

According to Rocket Mortgage, the reasons, why the market slows down in the colder months, are that families with kids don’t want to move during the school year, shorter daylight hours, and bad weather hurts house hunting. “Interest rates have increased so much in 2022 overall, you know. Month after month, it just kept increasing and what that does is essentially buyers take a step back. Number one you know every time the rate increases it knocks them down in their buying power,” said Loriebeth Chase, President of the Realtor Association of Pioneer Valley.

Chase told 22News that even though many are reluctant to look for homes with the current interest rates, it’s important to remember you can always refinance in the future.