Saturday, December 21, 2013

Phoenix-area home sales dipped in past few months

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Phoenix-area home sales dipped in past few months


The Republic | azcentral.com Thu Dec 12, 2013 
 
Homebuyer demand in metro Phoenix has backed off during the past few months, either because of a drop in confidence from the government shutdown or the area’s rising home prices, according to an ASU real-estate analyst.

Sales fell in October while the number of homes listed for sale climbed, according to the latest report from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University. The region’s median home price inched up to $200,000 from $199,000 in September.

“Sales will be way down in November and through the holidays, when some people even take their homes off the market until late January,” said Mike Orr, director of W.P. Carey’s Center for Real Estate Theory and Practice. “We also anticipate a much slower rate of price appreciation in 2014 than the furious pace we have witnessed over the last two years.”

In October, 7,045 houses sold in metro Phoenix. That’s about 100 fewer sales than in September. In the spring, home sales were hovering around 9,000 a month.

Home sales to investors as well as those to out-of-state buyers have dropped over the past six months. Investors were behind almost 40 percent of all home sales in July 2012, the peak of those types of purchases. In October, investor purchases accounted for about 23 percent of home sales. Second-home buyers from outside Arizona accounted for 16.4 percent of October’s home sales, down from 20.1 percent a year earlier.

High-end home sales are climbing, which partially accounts for the higher median price. Sales of homes priced above $500,000 are up 34 percent from a year earlier.

Listings are up 40 percent since November 2012, though Orr said the supply of homes for sale still is 15 to 20 percent below what would be considered normal for metro Phoenix.

Currently, about 26,500 homes are for sale in the Valley.


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