Sales Down, Median Prices Dip
The colder winter weather tends to slow the northeastern U.S. real estate sales even during the hottest market; October statistics show the winter season of 2006 is no exception. According to the Maine Real Estate Information System Inc., Realtors sold 1,186 single-family existing homes statewide during the month, down 9.88 percent from last October’s total of 1,316 sales.
The median sales price paid for those homes dipped a slight 1.41 percent to $192,250. Last October’s MSP was $195,000. The MSP indicates that half of the homes were sold for more and half sold for less.
Nationally, sales of single-family existing homes were down 11 percent in October. According to the National Association of Realtors, the national median sales price for those homes dropped to $221,300 during the month, a decrease of 3.4 percent from October 2005. Regional reports from NAR indicate a sales dip of 9.8 percent in the Northeastern United States. The regional median sales price was $254,000 – 5.2 percent lower than October 2005.
John Hatcher of Keller Williams Realty in Portland relays, “Buyers are not in such a hurry to make an offer [for] fear they may lose the property, as was the case over the last few years. Sellers are now frustrated with buyers’ longer decision process because they became accustomed to the fast-paced market they experienced in the past few years. Real estate is cyclical and is now in a more stabilized phase.”
A chart showing statistics for Maine and its 16 counties follows. The first chart lists statistics for the month of October only, statewide. The second chart compares the number of existing, single-family homes sold (units) and volume (sale price) in the rolling quarter of August, September and October of this year and last.