Charlotte's Lake Properties Stay Hot in Cooler Months

Charlotte's Lake Properties Stay Hot in Cooler Months

With the boating season over and the weather turning frigid, you might think that home sales at Charlotte-area lakes might be ready for winter hibernation.

Not so. Both Lake Norman and Lake Wylie saw exceptional sales in October, further cementing their status as two of the region’s hottest home markets. According to the October sales report from Carolina Multiple Listing Services, Lake Norman sales were up 50 percent from a year ago. Lake Wylie did even better with a 64.3 percent increase from October 2013.

“Those numbers tell an interesting story,” says Realtor Shayna Inman of Lake Realty in Cornelius.

That story begins with the strength of the real estate market in Charlotte, which continues to grow, area real estate agents say. Lake Norman, just 30 minutes north, has always benefited from its proximity to the city, Inman says, but several factors might be contributing to the lake’s surprising seasonal surge.

The biggest might be a shift in housing inventory, which has been steadily declining in Lake Norman since 2009, when the recession had slowed home sales enough that the market had a glut of available homes. In the Lake Norman area, there’s been a 47 percent reduction alone since 2011.

Also contributing is a surge of businesses moving into the Charlotte region – such as the new Amazon distribution center in Concord, she says. Many of those companies are a manageable commute from Lake Norman towns, and the long-awaited completion of the nearby 485 loop has made driving easier. On the west side of the lake, improvements to N.C. 16 have given residents another commuting option to uptown Charlotte.

Inman says the diversity of lake properties has kept sales as strong as ever, with a mix of communities for retirees and families with children. “People of all ages are attracted to the area,” she says.

All of which adds up to more activity, including more multiple offers lately on Lake Norman homes, Inman says. It’s still generally a buyer’s market, she believes, which is true of much of the Charlotte area. But with surprising activity in the colder months, the lake markets are showing they’re not going to cool off anytime soon.

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