Friday, March 20, 2009

February Residential Sales Statistics

The Tucson Association of Realtors has released the Residential Sales Statistics for February. Finally, some positive news. From January to February 2009, average sale price in Tucson increased 6.76% to $222,207 and median sale price increased 9.04% to $178,000. Is the downward tumble over? It's too early to tell, but other indicators are encouraging. Number of units sold were up 12% from the previous month and number of active listings were down 2.11%. With 7,352 listings and 659 sales in February, we have an 11 month supply of listings. This is far from the 6 month supply of listings that indicates a balanced market, but at least we are now heading in the right direction.

The increase in the FHA loan limit was a big help. Last year, FHA had practically no market share. Because conventional financing requires at least 5% to 10% down payment, FHA is the loan of choice for many borrowers with limited savings. FHA and VA loans accounted for 33% of the sales. Conventional mortgages (not government-insured) were 39% of the market, and cash accounted for 25% of the sales.

What is selling? The entry-level market is strong. Eighty-one percent of the sales in February were of properties priced under $300,000. While there were 1,297 houses priced over $500,000, only 38 of them (less than 3%) sold last month.

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