Birmingham Alabama Appraiser : Hoover Alabama-Greystone Market Trends-2010 Update

I recently did some market research in the Greystone development of Hoover, Alabama for an appraisal assignment I am working on.  This development is one of the more popular subdivisions in the Hoover, Alabama market.  The neighborhood surrounds a championship golf course that has hosted The Seniors Tour in the past.  Although the Greystone development is one of the premier neighborhoods,  it has also been effected by the overall slow real estate market.

The price range I was working in was between $500,000 to $1,500,000. Over the past several years homes over $500,000 have had a hard time selling, as I have reported previously and can be read here. I have found numerous foreclosure sales in this price range, not unlike homes in the lower price ranges.  I have included a chart of sales of homes over $500,000 that have sold from 2005 to present.  If you look close enough you can see a trend of fewer homes selling over this time period.  There have been homes in the upper price ranges sell, however they have become less numerous.

Hoover Alabama Greystone price trends

In addition to the above graph, which gives raw sales data, I have included neighborhood data from the past 12 months.  This data analyzes sales, current active listings, months of inventory, and median sale price to median list price ratios among other things.  Here is information from the 1004MC (Market Conditions) form:

1004MC Appraisal Form

What this data tells us is that the number of sales and the absorption rate (total sales/months) is relatively stable (minor variances noted).  The months of inventory, or how many months it would take to sell all of the homes, is declining.  This is good because it indicates homes are selling faster than new ones can be listed.  The median sales price over the entire 12 month period is relatively stable (again, taking into consideration minor variations from the first period to the last), and the days on market is declining.  A decline in the days on market reflects positively on sales activity.  If people are not buying then a house will stay on the market longer.

Information regarding active listings and their days on market also show that list prices are holding steady, however the listing days on market is declining.  An interesting figure is the sale price to list price ratio.  In the first and last period it was 80%, and the middle period it was 102%.  This indicates that, as a whole, the median sale price of  sold homes is approximately 80% of what they were listed for.  In other words they were priced too high to start off and then the list price was dropped to meet the market demand (which has been effected by foreclosure sales) .  The bottom line is that a large number of recent foreclosure homes have sold which has decreased the median sale price.  These foreclosures are the comparables appraisers have to use in their assignments and that have caused the value of other homes to decrease.  Their use is necessary because they make up a  large percentage of all of the closed sales, and are therefore influencing the market.

If you have any questions that I can answer for you please give me a call at 205.243.9304, send me an email, or connect with me on facebook.


  1. It looks like there are a couple different tiers of value here: above 1.1 million and other properties below below $700,000. From an outsider’s perspective, it looks like the gap between these two levels of the market has separated in greater degrees in recent years.

    • Within the last year or two there has been a tier effect occur due to that void I mentioned. The upper level sales are still occurring, however less frequently and the trend is downward due to the effects of the foreclosure activity.

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