May 7, 2012 (Shirley Allen)

Monthly sales of existing single-family homes in the state of New York bounced back after February’s decline, but still couldn’t match the previous year’s tally, while home prices stumbled, ending three consecutive months of improvement according to the latest housing data from the New York State Association of Realtors® (NYSAR).

An estimated total of 5,099 existing single-family homes were sold in the Empire State in March. That was 9.8 percent higher than the revised 4,644 homes sold in February but was still 1.8 percent lower than the 5,191 homes sold in March 2011.

The median sales price for an existing home in New York remained unchanged from February at $215,000, ending a streak of three consecutive months of improvement in housing prices. The median price was 2.9 percent higher than the median price of $209,000 in March of last year.

Duncan R. MacKenzie, chief executive officer of NYSAR, stated, “Strong affordability factors, improving consumer confidence and a mild winter increased buyer activity in the first quarter of the year as evidenced by our strongest start to the year since 2008.”

Of the 42 counties that provided data for the monthly report, twenty-two counties reported gains or were unchanged from the previous month with both Yates and Clinton Counties (+100.0 percent) reporting the largest increase in sales among counties with 20 or more sales while Ulster County (-52.9 percent) posted the largest monthly decline in sales.

Year-over-year, fifteen counties reported sales gains with the largest gain posted in Yates County (+144.4 percent) and the largest decline posted in Ulster County (-52.2 percent).

Suffolk County recorded the most sales for the month with an estimated 586 home sales, up from 521 the previous month, while Nassau County followed with an estimated 529 home sales for the month, up from 494 in March.

“We believe that this renewed consumer confidence, along with historically low mortgage rates and solid inventory levels, will position the housing market to build upon this strong start during the typically active spring and summer seasons,” MacKenzie added.

Tags: existing homes, condos, sales, median home prices, New York