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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Low Inventory Leads To Slip In Mass. Home Sales In February

Home, Condo Prices Increase Last Month


Single-family home sales in Massachusetts dropped last month, reversing 13 straight months of rising sales volume, according to a recent report by The Warren Group, publisher of Banker & Tradesman.

A total of 2,246 homes sold statewide in February, a 5 percent decrease from 2,366 sales in February 2012. This is first month since December 2011 that home sales posted a decrease.

Feb2013MAHomeSales"Two factors caused this modest drop in February: low inventory and a comparison with a strong previous year of sales," said Timothy M. Warren Jr., CEO of The Warren Group. "Even so, I'm still hopeful for a strong spring market. As more sellers list their homes in the spring, activity will pick back up."

So far this year, single-family home sales are up almost 1 percent from a year ago. Statewide, a total of 4,833 transactions were completed in the first two months in the year, up from 4,802 during the same period in 2012.

The median price for a single-family home rose more than 12 percent last month to $275,000 from $245,500 in February 2012. The year-to-date median home price is also up about 12 percent - rising to $279,000 from $250,750 last year.

"With such low inventory, we're seeing bidding wars - homes selling above the asking price," Warren said. "As prices rise, more sellers will begin to list their property which in turn pumps up sales volume."

February condominium sales posted a modest increase last month. There were 925 condo sales in February, up almost 1.4 percent from 912 sales during the same month last year. Year-to-date condo sales also rose almost 5 percent to 1,901 from 1,817 last year.

The median price for condos sold statewide in February increased more than 6 percent to $245,000, up from $230,525 during the same month last year.

The median selling price for condos sold in January and February was $242,000, a near 1 percent increase from the $240,000 median price recorded a year ago.

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