March 2008 Homes Sales Statistics

Drop in new listings suggests market is turning around

The number of homes listed for sale over the past two months is lower than the previous year suggesting the market may be beginning to adjust itself. The 4,518 homes added to the market in April were 8.5 percent lower than April of 2007 and the 3,697 new listings in March were almost 29 percent lower than the previous year according to the Columbus Board of REALTORS®.

The number of new listings January through April (15,648) is almost 12 percent lower than the same period last year.

“The recent lower sales prices are due to the overflow of inventory on the market for the last couple years,” says Greg Hrabcak, President of the Columbus Board of REALTORS®.

“It’s simple economics…When there is a greater supply than demand; the price will drop in order to compete. Although a hard pill to swallow for sellers, buyers have been in a very favorable position these past couple years. Now that may be changing.”

Currently, there are over 17,500 residential homes and condominiums available for sale in the central Ohio area. Although there is a broad selection of homes in every price range, 67 percent of the listings fall in the $100,000 - $399,999 price ranges.

Home sales for the year (January through April) are 12.3 percent lower than the same period last year, but are still in keeping with the pre-boom sales pace. The average sale price year to date is 7.2 percent lower than what the average home sold for last year.

“We’ve also seen a 40 percent decrease in the number of homes sold this year in the $750,000+ price range,” offers Hrabcak. “That kind of decrease in higher end home sales has significantly impacted the average sale price.”

“Word on the street?...Agents can’t believe that sales are down because they are so busy. Housing activity has really picked up now that the weather is nice and buyers are realizing that market conditions are so good.”

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