by Max Brantley
Home sales in Arkansas through November are down for the year, but the average price of homes sold is up a bit. A release from the Arkansas Realtors Association:
The Arkansas Realtors Association reports that Arkansas home sales are down 6.24 percent for the year through November as compared to sales for the same period in 2009. For the month of November home sales are down 31 percent as compared with November 2009 sales. The average price for a single-family home in Arkansas rose almost 3 percent in November to $147,793 from $143,808 in November 2009. These number are consistent with reports from the National Association of Realtors® that home sales nationally are 27.9 percent below November 2009 numbers and home sales in the South are 26.1 percent below the year-ago surge. NAR also reports that the median price in the South was $148,000, down 2.6 percent from November 2009.
A link to the full Arkansas Realtors Association report for 42 counties in Arkansas.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, is hopeful for 2011. “Continuing gains in home sales are encouraging, and the positive impact of steady job creation will more than trump some negative impact from a modest rise in mortgage interest rates, which remain historically favorable,” he said.
Yun added that home buyers are responding to improved affordability conditions. “The relationship recently between mortgage interest rates, home prices and family income has been the most favorable on record for buying a home since we started measuring in 1970,” he said. “Therefore, the market is recovering and we should trend up to a healthy, sustainable level in 2011.”
NAR President Ron Phipps said good buying opportunities will continue. “Traditionally there are far fewer buyers competing for properties at this time of the year, so serious buyers have a lot of opportunities during the winter months,” he said. “Buyers will enjoy favorable affordability conditions into the new year, although mortgage rates are expected to gradually rise as 2011 progresses.”