Home/Mortgages/RE/MAX: Improved Home Sales and Prices Following Seasonal Trends

July 18, 2011 (Brian Moore)

Home sales and home prices continued their more normal seasonal trends as home prices edged up for the fourth month in a row by 4.5 percent in June and closed transactions increased by 7.4 percent compared to May according to RE/MAX’s National Housing Report (NHR).

After a slow start at the beginning of this year’s buying season, the housing market seems to be back on track with June’s sales and prices now reflecting more seasonal norms, though not as robust as past historical trends.

Unemployment, tight lending standards, poor appraisals and consumer uncertainty continue to weigh on the market despite the positive month-to-month data.

“It’s very encouraging that both home prices and sales transactions have now risen for several months in a row,” said RE/MAX CEO Margaret Kelly. “It appears that this market is following traditional seasonal trends as it works its way through a recovery and back to more normal conditions.”

Closed transactions were 7.4 percent higher in June than May but were still 10.6 percent below the levels observed in June of 2010. Forty-seven out of the 53 metro areas in the report experienced month-over-month increases in closed transactions. Burlington, VT (+32.2), Hartford, CT (+31.9%), Trenton, NJ (+29.1%), New York, NY (+27.9%) and Boston, MA (+26.6%), recorded the highest gains in closed transactions with 20 metro areas experiencing double digit gains.

Sales prices in June were 4.5 percent higher than in May, but were still 4.9 percent lower than June 2010. The median sales price in June 2011 was $193,791 which compares to a median sales price of $203,887 in June of 2010.

All metro areas experienced price increases month-over-month, with the exception of two, Albuquerque (-1.7%) and Honolulu (-3.0%). The best price performers were Pittsburgh, PA (+6.6%), Baltimore, MD (+4.8%), Des Moines (+3.2%), Hartford, CT (+3.7%) and Washington, DC (+3.5%).

The average number of days it took to sell a home in June was 90, which was down from 94 days in May. Inventory remained unchanged from May at 6.9 months supply of homes on the market, but down from 9.3 months supply of homes in June 2010.

Inventory supply decreased the most in Miami, FL (-50.1%), Orlando, FL (-45.1%), Tampa, FL (-30.1%), Phoenix, AZ (-29.9%), Chicago, IL (-25.5%) and San Francisco, CA (-25.4%).

Tags: RE/MAX, home sales, home prices, National Housing Report, spring selling season, market recovery, seasonal trends, closed transactions