Thursday, 2 February 2012

State Real Estate Drop the Worst on Record

Home sales in Connecticut dropped 13 percent in 2011, making it the worst on record, according to The Warren Group, the preeminent compiler of real estate statistics in New England.

Sales of single-family homes in Connecticut dropped to 21,141 in 2011, down from 24,270 in 2010, according to Warren statistics. It marks the seventh straight year in which sales volume declined from the prior year.

Cheshire's real estate market, as shown by Sally Bowman Real Estate has 109 homes on the market as of mid-January. With an average of 2,594 square feet and 4 bedrooms, the average list price is about $478,000. Homes stay on the market for about seven months before selling.

State-wide, December's 1,714 single-family sales represented a nearly 8 percent year-over-year drop from 1,858 in December 2010.

Fourth quarter numbers were also down 6.5 percent year-over-year - 4,961 single-family home sales compared to 5,306 in the fourth quarter of 2010. It was the slowest fourth quarter for single-family sales ever recorded by The Warren Group.

Still, sales volume beat the first quarter 2011, when there were 3,950 sales, according to Warren's report.

December represented the fourth straight month that single-family sales decreased in Connecticut. In all of 2011, year-over-year sales volume only increased in January and August.

"The market in Connecticut is very slow. I think it's fair to say we are bumping along the bottom and can only go up from here," said Timothy M. Warren Jr., the chief executive officer of The Warren Group. "As the employment picture and consumer confidence improves, housing will slowly follow suit."

The median price for Connecticut single-family homes sold in 2011 was $243,000, a 2.8 percent drop from $250,000 in 2010. The median price for single-family homes sold in December dropped nearly 9.5 percent to $220,000, down from $243,000 during the same month in 2010.

That represents the lowest median home price in since February 2009, when the recorded price was $219,104. The median price for single-family homes sold during the fourth quarter decreased by 9 percent to $225,000, down from $247,500 in the fourth quarter 2010.

"December's decline in median prices is the sixth drop in 2011. So prices are still soft, reflecting a slow market," Warren said.

According to the Warren report, condominium sales fell to their lowest yearly total in more than two decades. A total of 5,704 Connecticut condominiums were sold in 2011, a 16.4 percent decrease from 2010, when 6,824 sales were recorded. Fourth quarter condo sales dropped 2 percent to 1,370 from the 1,401 recorded during the same time in 2010.

In the month of December, however, condo sales increased, Warren said. A total of 518 condos traded hands, a 12.6 percent jump from 460 sold during the same time a year ago. Year-over-year condo sales only increased in August and December.

That trend was seen in Cheshire as well, according to Sally Bowman Real Estate. The company reports 44 condos are on the market with an average list price of about $264,000. It takes about seven months for the average condo to sell in Cheshire.

Condo median prices also increased in 2011, the report indicates. The median price decreased more than 6 percent to $173,250, down from $182,250 in 2010. The median sales price of condos in December also dropped by almost 13 percent to $167,000, from $191,500 during December 2010.

Condo median prices dropped even further in the fourth quarter to $161,750, a 13.7 percent drop from $187,500 recorded in the fourth quarter 2010.


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