The number of real estate sales in Plymouth County continued a slow, but steady climb in May, according to Plymouth County Register of Deeds John R. Buckley, Jr.
Buckley reported 707 sales in May, up from 534 in April, marking the most deeds recorded in a month since last September. Overall, there have now been recorded 2,681 sales in Plymouth County in 2023. This is 22 percent fewer recordings of sales that had occurred during this time last year, when Plymouth County recorded 3,453 sales transactions. Despite some national reporting of sale price drops, Plymouth County sale prices continue to increase.
At the same time, refinances have also begun to show some signs of life. Buckley reported 1,274 mortgages were recorded in May, up from 1,002 in April, and marking the most mortgages recorded in a month this year. Through the first five months of the year, Plymouth County recorded 5,037 mortgages, down 47 percent from the 9,509 that were recorded through the same period in 2022. While the volume of mortgages has started to rebound a little, consumers are borrowing slightly less per loan than they did last year at this time. The average mortgage through May of this year is $331,862, down 5 percent from the $348,931 average at this point last year.
Buckley also reported an increase in foreclosure activity. The number of notices initiating new foreclosure proceedings recorded each month have ranged from 36 to 60 during the first five months of 2023. In May, that number came in at 59, which, other than the 60 recorded in March, represents the most notices recorded in over three years. Buckley explained that while 59 foreclosure notices recorded in a single month is a concerning number, it pales when compared to the 114 foreclosure notices recorded back in May 2008.
“Although from a historic perspective, the numbers remain relatively low, the fact that the numbers are increasing bears watching,” he added.
There were 15 foreclosure deeds recorded, representing the highest number of foreclosures recorded since July 2020. Buckley reported a total of 54 mortgage foreclosures recorded thus far in 2023, 32 percent more than the 41 recorded in the first five months of 2022.