Sales of existing homes rose in January on the national level, but declined on the state and local levels.
Alison Holm reports.
The National Association of Realtors says January sales of existing homes rose 3.3 percent from December to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.69 million - the fastest pace since 2007. The group credits steady job gains, modest pay raises and rising consumer confidence, even as borrowing costs have risen since last fall. Some potential buyers may be accelerating their purchases to get ahead of any further mortgage rate increases. The Columbus Realtors trade association says nearly 16 hundred homes in its mult-county region were sold in January, down 29 percent from December. The group says there continues to be a shortage of inventories. The Ohio Association of Realtors says January sales statewide fell two percent from December’s seasonally adjusted annual rate of more than 153 thousand. Nationally, median sale prices fell from 232 thousand in December to nearly 229 thousand dollars in January. Locally, the average sale price held about steady at nearly 196 thousand dollars. Statewide, January’s average home price fell by 5 thousand dollars to 154 thousand.