Spring has sprung; Real estate market shows signs of new life. Reply

April sales numbers demonstrate that the real estate market continues to improve across the nation and in Massachusetts.  Single-family home sales and median home sales were up across the country and in the commonwealth.  Although April single-family home sales were up in the Pioneer Valley, median home prices were down.

A community garden flourishes in Northampton much like the real estate market is beginning to do in the Pioneer Valley.

According to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), existing home-sales increased 3.4%. Existing home sales include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, and coops.  What’s more, NAR reported that the national median existing-home price jumped in April 10.1% when compared to April 2011.

Because March saw the same gains, NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said that this was the first time there has been back-to-back price increases from a year earlier since June and July of 2010.

In Massachusetts, April median home prices were up for the first time since September 2011, according to the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® (MAR).

Single-family home sales increased again compared to the same time last year for the 10th straight month.  MAR reported that there were 3,527 single-family homes sold in April, which is an 18.3% increase over April 2011.  When compared to March, single-family home sales were up 10.3% and median prices were up 5.8% in the commonwealth.

In the Pioneer Valley, the REALTOR® Board of Pioneer Valley (RAPV) reported that sales are up in Hampshire and Hampden County, but down in Franklin County.  The regional REALTOR® board reported that single-family home sales are up 30.4% in the Pioneer Valley as a whole when compared to April 2011.  However, median prices are down in all three counties.

Here is the break-down of single-family home sales and median sale prices by county:

County Sales Median Price
Hampshire Up 18.2% Down 7.2%
Franklin Down 25% Down 10.2%
Hampden Up 45.2% Down 7.5%

RAPV didn’t release regional condo data, but condominiums sales were also up in in Massachusetts in the month of April and condo median prices rose for the second month in a row.  MAR reported that there was a 10.2% increase in condo sales when compared to April 2011.  The median sales price for condominiums rose 3%.  When compared to March, condo sales were up 13.8%.

Yun said the housing recovery is underway.  “It is no longer just the investors who are taking advantage of high affordability conditions.  A return of normal home buying for occupancy is helping home sales across all price points, and now the recovery appears to be extending to home prices,” he said.  “The general downtrend in both listed and shadow inventory has shifted from a buyers’ market to one that is much more balanced, but in some areas it has become a seller’s market.”

Specializing in western Mass real estate, call Michael Seward at 413-531-7129 if you are looking to buy or sell a home in the Pioneer Valley. Check out the video of this western Mass property.

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