In 2020, recent trends of increasing housing prices, sales, and new construction continued. The median home sale price continued to rise, from $340,000 in 2018 to $355,000 in 2019, then further increasing to $375,064 in 2020. Adjusting for inflation, this is the highest median price since 2007. The number of homes sold in 2020, 7,532, was largely consistent with 2019 sales; however, this was the largest number of homes sold since 2006. It should be noted, though, that new home sales decreased in 2020 by 25% from 805 to 686. A total of 1,732 units were constructed, which is the largest number built since 2008.
The percentage of sales that were affordably priced at under $250,000 decreased from 23% in 2019 to 18% in 2020. The increase in median home sale price combined with the decrease in home sales under $250,000 indicates a decrease in affordably-priced homes in Chester County.
While the median home sale price varied by type of house, the gap between new and all home sale prices decreased from 2019 to 2020. The median home sale price for new homes was almost $100,000 higher compared to all home sales in 2019, but around $75,000 higher in 2020. This change was due to the rising median home sale prices for all homes. Similarly, the gap between the price of detached and attached units decreased. The median sales price for detached homes decreased from $399,900 in 2019 to $377,500 in 2020, the median sales price increased from $303,700 to $327,250 for townhomes, and increased from $205,000 to $222,500 for apartments.
The construction of multi-family apartment units increased from 221 in 2019 to 615 in 2020, nearly returning to the growth seen in 2015 and 2016. Over 650 apartment units were constructed annually from 2015 through 2017. With the increase in apartments, the total number of annual housing units increased from 1,409 in 2019 to 1,732 in 2020.
Newlin ($778,500) and Easttown ($777,500) Townships had the highest median sales prices in 2020, Coatesville City ($105,000), and Parkesburg Borough ($190,000) the lowest. The lower cost home sales were largely in the Phoenixville, Tredyffrin, Coatesville, Downingtown/Exton, and East Goshen areas. The highest priced sales predominantly occurred in Easttown, Tredyffrin, and Willistown Townships. Tredyffrin Township had the greatest diversity of home sale prices.
The Chester County Planning Commission completes an anual report of housing sales and construction based on data provided by the Chester County Assessment Office. Apartment buildings are considered built when fully assesed. Construction dates for apartment construction may be delayed by up to a year due to final assessment occuring after 50% occupancy and administrative delays. Due to the delays in data, actual apartment numbers may differ from reported figures, the Chester County Planning Commission identified multiple apartment projects built in 2020 that will be included in future 2021 numbers, and believes a portion of 2020 apartment figures were built in 2019.