Sales Improve for Second Month in a Row

By Greg Sax on Wednesday, September 10th, 2008

August Pending Sales We released the monthly housing stats today for August 2008. Here’s the gist of what we had to say.

Sales activity in the Twin Cities housing market continues to post healthy numbers. For the second consecutive month and only the third time in the last 39 months, pending sales posted a year-over-year increase. August saw 4,411 purchase agreements signed—an increase of 15.0 percent from August of last year. There has not been a year-over-year increase this large since November of 2004.

There were 18.8 percent fewer new homes on the market in August 2008 than in August 2007. The total inventory of homes for sale at the end of August was 9.2 percent lower than the same time last year, which is actually a good thing. We’ve been needing fewer homes on the market, and we’re starting to get what we needed. There’s still plenty to choose from out there.

Home prices are still on a downward trend. The overall August median sales price of $200,000 fell from last year by 13.0 percent. Lender-mediated homes posted a median sales price of $150,000, a decrease of 9.6 percent from last year. Traditional properties had an August median sales price of $229,900, a more modest decrease of 4.3 percent.

Due to the decline in home prices and a downtick in mortgage rates, affordability is up. Buyers are taking notice and jumping back into the market to take advantage. We’re eager to see how this plays out in the snowy months.

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