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Sales of existing homes highest in 2 years

The sales of existing homes rebounded to their highest level since July 2007, supported by first-time buyers.

Sales of previously owned homes climbed 9.4% in September after a fall in August for the first time in four months, according to the National Association of Realtors. Sales of existing homes were up 9.2% year-over-year from September 2008. A lot of buyers responded to the first-time buyer tax credit. Early information from the Association indicates that first-time buyers may have accounted for more than 45% of the home sales in the past year.

The annualized rate of 5.57 million properties for September surpassed the consensus estimate of 5.35 million units compiled by

The median price of homes sold in September was $174,900, down 8.5% from a year before. The price drop was led by sales of distressed properties, including forclosures and short sales, which comprised 29% of sales in September.

Regionally, the strongest market was the West, and sales grew 13% (7.8% higher than last year’s rate) to an annualized rate of 1.3 million. The median price in the West was $219,000, down 15% from last year. The West was followed by the Midwest, the South, and the Northeast. Rates and prices are in the article.

An article on the most and least affordable cities in which to buy a house is here. The 2nd, 4th, and 5th LEAST affordable cities are in California.

No surprise there…. :-)

-Bill at Cheshire Cat Photo™

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