Increase in October Home Prices Biggest in Over Two Years

by MAR Staff | Nov 26, 2012
Home sales up for the 16th straight month
WALTHAM, Mass. – November 27, 2012 – The Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® (MAR) reported today that October single-family median home prices had their biggest monthly increase since June 2010, the last month of the home buyer tax credit. The number of closed home sales was up again for the 16th straight month compared to the year before. Both condominium prices and sales were also up from October 2011.

October 2012 Housing Numbers Podcast with
MAR President Trisha McCarthy

“Because median prices took their biggest jump since the last month of the home buyer tax credit this could be a strong sign of the start of an upward trend,” said 2012 MAR President Trisha McCarthy, broker at Keller Williams Realty in Newburyport. “While the number of closed sales in October rebounded nicely, inventory continues to be a factor for buyers and sellers in the market.”
There were 3,685 detached single-family homes sold this October, a 22 percent increase from the 3,017 homes sold the same time last year. This is the 16th straight month of year-over-year increases. On a month-to-month basis, home sales were essentially flat, up less than one percent (0.9%) from 3,651 homes sold this past September.
The median selling price for single-family homes in October was $287,000 which was up 4.4 percent from $275,000 in October 2011. This is the largest percent increase since the median price went up 8.3 percent in June 2010, which was the last month to close and qualify for the home buyer tax credit. On a month-to-month basis, the October median selling price was down 1.6 percent from $292,000 in September 2012. This is the fourth straight month-to-month decline.  
The October condominium market was up 34.8 percent compared to the same time last year (from 1,056 units sold in 2011 to 1,423 units sold in 2012). This is the 15th month of the last 16 that condominium sales have been up.  On a month-to-month basis, condominium sales were down 2.2 percent compared to the 1,455 units sold this past September. 
Condominium median selling prices in October were up 2.0 percent from the October 2011 median price (from $259,900 to $265,000). This is the eighth straight month that monthly median prices have been up. On a month-to-month basis, the median selling price of a condominium was down 5.4 percent from a September 2012 median of $280,000. This is the fourth straight month-to-month price decrease.
Inventory and Days on Market:
The inventory of single-family homes as of October 2012 decreased 23.5 percent from October 2011 (32,483 listings in 2011 to 24,863 listings in 2012) which translates into 6.7 months of supply in October 2012.  This is down from 10.3 months of supply last year and also down from 7.5 months in September 2012.  Inventory has gone down 11 of the last 13 months. This was also the largest single month year-over-year decrease since MAR has been tracking this data.
The inventory of condominiums on the market in October was down 32.2 percent compared to the year before (10,859 listings in 2011 to 7,358 listings in 2012), which translates into 5.1 months of supply, which is down from 8.9 months in October 2011 and down from 5.8 months in September.
Detached single-family homes stayed on the market an average of 102 days in October 2012, which was down from 114 days in October 2011. Condos stayed on the market an average of 102 days, which was down from 111 days in October 2011.  On a month-to-month basis, days on market for single-family homes were down from 104 days in September while condos were up from 99 days.
About the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS®:
Organized in 1924, the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® is a professional trade organization with more than 19,000 members.  The term REALTOR® is registered as the exclusive designation of members of the National Association of REALTORS® who subscribe to a strict code of ethics and enjoy continuing education programs. 
Editors and reporters: Please note that the term Realtor is properly spelled with an initial capital “R”, per the Associated Press Stylebook.