Though February home sales rose over January, they were 3.0 percent below the level of February 2010 and median prices were off 5.9 percent from a year ago in the 54 U.S. markets surveyed in the RE/MAX National Housing Report.
The February data represents the largest year-to-year price drop in the RE/MAX survey since an 8.5 percent decrease in April 2010, the month that the home buyer tax credits expired. Seventeen of the report’s 54 metros experienced a year-to-year increase in sales prices in February. Areas seeing the largest rise in home prices from last year are: Anchorage, AK +11.2 percent, Jackson, MS +6.3 percent, Pittsburgh, PA +4.9 percent, Charlotte, NC +4.4 percent, Honolulu, HI +3.7 percent, and Houston, TX +3.3 percent.
“It’s a very good sign that home sales increased over January, which could mean that sales will increase further as we move into springtime, the prime home buying season,” said RE/MAX CEO Margaret Kelly. “If this trend for home sales does continue, we could also see home prices start to move up, as well.”
Housing inventories fell 2.2 percent from January and are 8.9 percent lower than February 2010 levels. The average days on market for sold homes in the surveyed 54 metro areas for February was 103, up from the 99-day average in January and up from the 92-day average in February last year. The RE/MAX Housing Report shows that days on market has remained over 90 for five consecutive months. Days on market is the average number of days from listing to signed contract.
The monthly RE/MAX Report is based on MLS data in approximately 54 metropolitan areas, includes all residential property types, and is not annualized. For maximum representation, many of the largest metro areas in the country are represented, and an attempt is made to include at least one metro from each state. Metro area definitions include the specific counties established by the U.S. Government’s Office of Management and Budget, with some exceptions.