2010-02-06 / News

Fourth quarter real estate sales activity fuels optimism for 2010

COLUMBUS – A challenging real estate market throughout most of 2009 has given way to renewed optimism as Ohio’s housing sector was buoyed by strong fourth quarter sales and a clear uptick in the average sales price, according to statistics provided by the state’s Multiple Listing Services.

“The 2009 market certainly presented a number of challenges for both industry professionals and property owners in all corners of the Buckeye State...yet we ended the year on a positive with an outstanding fourth quarter,” said Doug McCloud, president of the Ohio Association of REALTORS ®. “Sales increased by nearly 11 percent during the final three months of the year compared to the prior year and, equally important, the average sales price has posted gains for three consecutive months.”

Sales during the fourth quarter of the year (October-December) reached 26,936, a 10.9 percent increase from the 24,279 sales during the period a year ago. Additionally, the average sales price increased each month (a .7 percent increase in October, 8.1 percent increase in November and a 10 percent jump in December).

“Despite the dire economic conditions that gripped the nation, more than 104,000 homes were sold...a clear indication that the desire to make the American Dream of homeownership a reality remains strong throughout Ohio,” McCloud said. “We remain bullish on the marketplace – as interest rates remain at historic lows, prices have stabilized and begun to trend upward, sellers are realistic in their expectations and consumers understand that long-term, owning a home is a tremendous investment. Add in the fact that the home tax credit for first-time buyers was extended through April and even expanded to include long-time buyers and it’s no surprise that the industry is so upbeat about the market’s prospects in the coming months.”

Year-end 2009 sales total of new and existing homes (January through December) totaled 104,010, an 8.1 percent decrease from the 113,225 sales posted in 2008.

The state’s average sale price (January-December) of $129,485 marks a 5.4 percent decrease from the $136,863 average posted in 2008.

Total dollar volume reached $15.5 billion, a 13.1 percent decrease from the $13.5 billion posted during 2008. Sales in December 2009 reached 7,498, a 3.2 percent decrease from the 7,742 sales posted during the month in 2008. The average sales price jumped to $130,814, a 10 percent increase from the December 2008 mark of $118,943.

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