Home/Mortgages/Monthly Home Sales Take a Double Digit Dive in September

October 18, 2012 (Jeff Alan)

Monthly sales of existing homes took a double-digit dive in September, barely beating last year’s tally according to RE/MAX’s National Housing Report (NHR) while home prices fell for the second consecutive month but still outperformed the previous year for the eighth consecutive month.

Closed transactions of home purchases fell 17.5 percent from August to September and were only 0.5 percent higher than in September of 2011, still good enough to mark the 15th consecutive month that home sales have increased year-over-year.

Twenty-nine out of the 53 metro areas in the report posted year-over-year increases in closed transactions, down from 44 in August. Albuquerque, NM (+40.9%), Chicago, IL (+24.1%), Raleigh-Durham, NC (+22.1%), Providence, RI (+22.1%), Nashville, TN (+21.0%) and Denver, CO (+11.4%) recorded the highest year-over-year gains in closed transactions in September.

The median sales price of the homes sold in September was 2.2 percent lower than in the previous month of August, falling from $168,685 to $164,989. The median sales price was still 7.8 percent higher than the median price of $153,023 in September of 2011. It was the eighth consecutive month that home prices have increased year-over-year following 18 months of declines.

Forty-four of the 53 metro areas posted higher sales prices in September than they did a year earlier, down from 46 metro areas the previous month. The areas that posted the largest price gains during the month were Phoenix, AZ (+33.3%), Miami, FL (+23.1%), Atlanta, GA (+23.0%), San Francisco, CA (+22.7%), Detroit, MI (+20.0%), and Boise (+16.3%).

Housing supplies continued to dwindle with the average monthly inventory of homes for sale declining by 5.3 percent from August and 29.1 percent from September 2011. It was the 27th consecutive month that the supply of homes for sale has declined.

Despite the declining inventory, the double-digit drop in sales pushed the average month’s supply of home for sale up for the first time in four months, increasing from a 4.9 months supply of homes in August to a 5.5 months supply in September but still down from a 7.7 months supply in September of last year.

The average number of days it took for a home to sale remained unchanged from August ay 81 but was still lower than the 94 days it took a year ago.

Tags: home sales, home prices, seasonal trends, closed transactions, median sales price