Residential Sales Comparison Pre-pandemic to Now.

Emmet Realtors Data

We were curious to see how sales varied from before the pandemic until now. Anecdotally, we’ve observed an increase in traffic year-round which led us to wonder how many more people are here consistently, not just as resorters. We pulled data from the Emmet Association of Realtors monthly statistical reporting to review residential sales from July 2018-2022 (Emmet County).

In July 2018, we were roughly 21 months out from the pandemic’s beginning. At this time, there were 67 sales of residential homes which an average price of $349,980.

In July 2019, (roughly 9 months out), there were 66 residential sales with an average price of $289,445.

In July 2020, (roughly 5 months into the pandemic), our year-to-year July sales peaked at 113. The average price of homes was $564,725, nearly double 2019’s average price.

55 of these 2020 sales were purchased using a mortgage. Of the mortgaged sales, the average sale price was $424,540 with the highest sale price being $3,200,000.
53 purchases were completed via cash. Of the cash sales, the average sale price was $613,913 with the highest sale price being $4,000,000.

In July 2021, roughly 17 months into the pandemic, residential sales in Emmet County were back down to 68 but the average price was up $449,473 (roughly 35% over 2019 averages).

This map shows that more than 50% of the 2021 sales took place in Harbor Springs and Petoskey. 31 sales were mortgage purchases. Of the mortgaged purchases, the average sale price was $402,602. The highest sale price was $1,324,000.
35 sales were cash purchases. For the cash purchases, the average sale price was $478,347 with the highest sale price of $3,750,000.

Now, in July 2022, sales were up at 70 residential homes sold (over 2018). The average price was $610,447. That’s a 110% increase from 2019’s sales figures and a 74% increase from 2018.

Census Data

We also pulled U.S. Census data from 2020 to see if we could find any correlation between the sales figures and residents in Emmet County.

According to the April 1st, 2020 Census data, there was a population of 34,112 in the county. There is an estimated population as of July 1, 2021 of 34, 225. In 2010, there were 34,112 people living in Emmet County equating to a 4.3% increase from 2010 until 2020.

We looked at to further study the climb in the population of Emmet County and found that there was a 2.7% increase from 2019-2021. Their information comes from the Census Bureau’s population estimates.


Unfortunately, without a more recent census, the best we can do is to look at estimates and residential sales data. Knowing that sales increased doesn’t necessarily mean the homeowners moved out of the county, nor does it mean there were new residents moving in. Anecdotally, we’ve heard that many people are taking advantage of “working from home” in our beautiful Northern Michigan, but the evidence doesn’t present itself for us to verify.

Fun fact

In July 2018, there were a total of 1,161 units on the market (All MLS). In July 2022, there were a total of 487 (All MLS).

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