Home sales down in February

by MPA27 Mar 2014
Residential property sales were down month-over-month in February but still up markedly from a year ago, according to data released today.

Residential properties sold at an estimated annual pace of 5,083,241 last month, according to RealtyTrac’s February Residential & Foreclosure Sales Report. That’s a 0.2% decrease from the previous month but still up 7% from a year ago. February was the fourth consecutive month in which sales activity dropped month over month.

The nationwide sales drop was drive3n by decreases in 31 states, according to RealtyTrac. Sales volume on a year-over-year basis dropped in six states, including Massachussetts, California, Arizona and Nevada, and 21 out of the country’s 50 largest metro areas.

“Supply and demand have reached a bit of a standoff in this uneven real estate recovery,” said Daren Blomquist, vice president at RealtyTrac. “The supply of distressed properties – which buyers and investors have come to rely on over the past few years – is evaporating quickly in most markets, but that dwindling supply is not being adequately replenished by non-distressed homeowners listing their homes or by new homes being built. Meanwhile, a key source of demand over the past two years — institutional investors purchasing single family homes as rentals — is starting to decline, and it’s not yet clear if that diminishing demand will be filled by first-time homebuyers and move-up buyers.”

The national median sales price for residential properties was $164,667 in February. That’s a 1% drop from January but a 4% increase from February of 2013. Short sales and distressed sales accounted for 16.9% of all sales last month, up from 16.1% in January.


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