The PrivateBank Capital Markets Update: March 22, 2012 indicates that sales of existing U.S. homes held near a two-year high last month, indicating the housing sector is becoming less of a drag on the recovery. Purchases dropped .9% to an annual pace of 4.59 million units from a revised 4.63 million pace in January that was stronger than previously reported.
Even with the modest decline in sales last month, the total sales for January and February marked the strongest start to a year since 2007. The median price of a U.S. home increased .3% to $156,600-the first year over year increase in home prices since July 2010. Distressed sales, which includes foreclosures and short sales, accounted for 34% of all transactions last month, down from 35% in January. The number of previously-owned homes on the market rose by 100,000 to 2.43 million. At the current pace of sales, it would take 6.4 months to sell those homes–a level of inventory which the National Association of Realtors says is generally consistent with stable prices.
The National Association of Realtors’s housing affordability gauge climbed to a record high of 206.1 in January. A value of 100 means that a family with the national median income has enough to qualify for a median-priced property. Epic Development is seeing significant demand for new homes in Atlanta. The greatest demand is inside I-285 and in the better school districts outside the perimeter.
For more information about home ownership or real estate investment in Atlanta call Jim LaVallee at 404-847-9080 or write Jim@EpicDevelopment.com. You can learn more about all our current listings here. For more information about commercial real estate operations or investment visit www.EpiCity.com.