Ocean County Housing Market 2022 Review

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Market Trends

Was 2022 the bridge in a more stable housing market in Ocean County?

Before we talk about what happened in 2022, we need to realize that 2021 was a record-breaking year in the Ocean County real estate market. When looking at the 2022 housing market statistics, remember that 2021 had historically high home values, home buyer demand, and home prices which were mostly driven by low interest rates and the (low) supply of homes for sale.

In 2022, the increase in mortgage interest rates and reduced supply was a major factor in lower sales. Over the course of the year, interest rates quickly increased up to 7%+. The Federal Reserve made these historically significant financial market decisions in an effort to address intensifying inflation that disrupted markets around the world. With that in mind, the demand for homes was impacted by borrowing costs nearly doubled over the course of a year. There will always be changes in interest rates, but how quickly they increased was a major factor in demand abating.

Search All Homes for Sale in Ocean County

As previously indicated, mortgage interest rates have an impact on the total affordability of homeownership. Buyers quickly did the arithmetic once the higher rates came into effect and realized that the monthly cost of purchasing a property had now dramatically jumped by hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars and in some markets. The buyer pool naturally reacted by putting the brakes on what had been an intense, historically unprecedented buying frenzy that had taken place over the previous few years.

From this, it is rather simple to correlate that fewer sales will occur when demand is lower. 2022 is anticipated to rank among the top three years nationally for the largest year-over-year fall in the number of homes sold nationwide. We are estimating that this year will see roughly a couple of million fewer homes sold than previous year. Nevertheless, bear in mind that 2021 was a year that was a record-breaker.

What is interesting is that pricing and home values haven’t been adversely affected as much as you might think. Currently there is still growth in home values, just at a slower pace than 2021. Many economists believe that we are not living in a housing bubble that is about to burst where we see dramatic losses in home values, but rather that the growth we have seen in the real estate market was simply not sustainable over the long term.

2022 Ocean County Market Statistics for Selected Townships in Comparison to 2021

Stafford Twp. (Manahawkin)

Barnegat Twp


Lacey Twp (Lanoka Harbor and Forked River)

Berkeley Twp (Bayville)

Toms River Township

Brick Township

Bottom Line: A lot has changed in the Ocean County real estate market by the end of 2022. The best way to think about this is that the run of consecutive years of massive growth and extreme conditions in the housing market was thought to be unsustainable and had to stop at some point; 2022 was the year for that to happen. It’s not all doom and gloom though. The market conditions of the past few years would largely be described as risky and unbalanced, and hopefully 2023 will be the return of stability and opportunity for both sellers and buyers.

Karl Hess provides expert real estate services to residential buyers and sellers in Ocean County. Contact us today for more information on Ocean County Real Estate and for professional assistance navigating this complex home market.


  1. https://www.narrpr.com/reports
  2. https://mo.flexmls.com/