Mixed Q1 Picture On Existing Single-Family Home Sales

Posted by Orb Staff on May 09, 2012 No Comments
Categories : Residential Mortgage

11497_house_with_moon Mixed Q1 Picture On Existing Single-Family Home Sales The median existing single-family home price rose in 74 out of 146 metropolitan statistical areas in the first quarter of this year from the same quarter in 2011, while 72 areas had price declines, according to new data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

At the end of the first quarter, there were 2.37 million existing homes available for sale, which is 21.8% below the close of the first quarter of 2011 when there were 3.03 million homes on the market. NAR notes there has been a sustained downtrend since inventories set a record of 4.04 million in summer 2007.

The national median existing single-family home price was $158,100 in the first quarter, which is 0.4% below $158,700 in the first quarter of 2011. Distressed homes accounted for 32% of first-quarter sales; they constituted 38% a year ago.

Total existing-home sales increased 4.7% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.57 million in the first quarter, up from the downwardly revised 4.37 million in the fourth quarter of 2011, and were 5.3% above the 4.34 million level during the first quarter of 2011, when sales spiked.

Regionally, existing-home sales in the Northeast jumped 8.6% in the first quarter and are 6.6% above the first quarter of 2011. The median existing single-family home price in the Northeast declined 3.2% to $226,300 in the first quarter from a year ago.

In the Midwest, existing-home sales rose 5.5% in the first quarter and are 11.7% higher than a year ago. The median existing single-family home price in the Midwest increased 0.8% to $125,300 in the first quarter from the same quarter in 2011.

Existing-home sales in the South increased 2.1% in the first quarter and are 4.1% above the first quarter in 2011. The median existing single-family home price in the South rose 1.2% to $143,600 in the first quarter from a year earlier.Â

Existing-home sales in the West rose 5.9% in the first quarter and are 1.4% higher than a year ago. The median existing single-family home price in the West slipped 0.9% to $196,200 in the first quarter from the first quarter of 2011.

‘This is the highest first-quarter sales pace since 2007,’ says NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. ‘With strong market fundamentals, total home sales this year should rise seven to 10 percent.’

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