Numbers don’t show it yet but real estate is feeling better.

Volumes took their normal seasonal dip in January but were up against a very weak January of a year ago.  Unit sales in the County dropped 68% to 96 transactions in January versus 140 in December but were up 10% versus the year ago period.  As has been the case for the last  year or more, dollar volumes  year over year trailed  the year ago period, falling 7.7% to  $40.2 million despite the higher unit volumes.  However, the dollar decline versus December was slightly less than the unit decline reflecting some stabilization in average selling prices.  Year over year average price comparisons, however, were quite negative.  The average selling price for a single family home was $665,000 down from  $767,000 a year ago.  Multi-family ASPs were also down substantially , falling to  $338,000 versus $426,000.  Once again these number tend to overstate the decline in pricing.  Looking at like units, year over year price declines were closer to 10% but a continued focus of buying in smaller or lower quality units have generated substantially larger drops in ASPs.  Lot prices also continued to show a decidedly downward trend with six transaction averaging $131,500 each.  A year ago, that number was  $222,000.  While these number appear quite negative, I must add that things are “feeling”  better.  Inventory is down and the number of showings in the county is up 35% versus a year ago.

 

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