To­tal ex­ist­ing home sales rise again in June

Record Observer - - News -

WASH­ING­TON — Boosted by a greater share of sales to first-time buy­ers not seen in nearly four years, ex­ist­ing-home sales main­tained their up­ward tra­jec­tory in June and in­creased for the fourth con­sec­u­tive month, ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Real­tors. Only the North­east saw a de­cline in clos­ings in June, and sales to in­vestors fell to their low­est over­all share since July 2009.

To­tal ex­ist­ing-home sales, which are com­pleted trans­ac­tions that in­clude sin­gle­fam­ily homes, town­homes, con­do­mini­ums and co-ops, climbed 1.1 per­cent to a sea­son­ally ad­justed an­nual rate of 5.57 mil­lion in June from a down­wardly re­vised 5.51 mil­lion in May. After last month’s gain, sales are now up 3 per­cent from June 2015 (5.41 mil­lion) and re­main at their high­est an­nual pace since Fe­bru­ary 2007 (5.79 mil­lion).

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said the im­pres­sive four-month streak of sales gains through June caps off a solid first half of 2016 for the hous­ing mar­ket. “Ex­ist­ing sales rose again last month as more tra­di­tional buy­ers and fewer in­vestors were able to close on a home de­spite many com­pet­i­tive ar­eas with un­re­lent­ing sup­ply and de­mand im­bal­ances,” he said. “Sustained job growth as well as this year’s de­scent in mort­gage rates is un­doubt­edly driv­ing the ap­petite for home pur­chases.”

On the lo­cal front, Queen Anne’s County has seen an in­crease in the me­dian price of a home. Ac­cord­ing to Merry Tobin, pres­i­dent of the Bay Area As­so­ci­a­tion of Real­tors, “The hous­ing mar­ket has been very strong this year. We’ve seen an in­crease in sales as well as the aver­age me­dian price of a home. In June of 2015, the me­dian price was $305,000. This year has seen an in­crease to $323,000. That’s a 6.1 per­cent in­crease, which is a good sign, but is also an in­di­ca­tion that we need to get more houses on the mar­ket. Our mar­ket in­ven­tory has re­duced since this time last year. ”

The Bay Area As­so­ci­a­tion of Rre­al­tors has pro­vided ed­u­ca­tion and sup­port to more than 320 Real­tors in Queen Anne’s, Kent and Caro­line coun­ties for the past 40 years. Their web­site is www.ba­yareare­al­tors.com.

MERRY TOBIN

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