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Massachusetts Housing Market Shows 13 Consecutive Months of Growth


According to the latest numbers, the Massachusetts real estate market is showing the largest number of single-family home sales in years, with 13 straight months of year-over-year growth. WAMC’s Berkshire Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports…

The Warren Group, a market-data research organization based in Boston, says that July of 2012 was the best July for home sales since 2005. Cory Hopkins, Editorial Director for the Warren Group, says that over the same time last year, the state-wide average for both single-family and condo sales, is showing a marked improvement.

The Warren Group’s county-by-county data shows some of the biggest increases in sales in the Western part of the state. Single-family home sales in Franklin County were up 45% of July of 2011, and Hampshire County is up 44%. In Berkshire County, the Warren group says sales were up 28%.

Cory Hopkins says that sales prices, however, are low, but stable – which he hopes to see increase as the market improves.

The Massachusetts Association of Realtors also released data showing strong statewide sales over the same time last year. But in addition to an increase in sales, the Association released data on realtor confidence for the month of July. On a scale of 0 to 100, last month’s realtor confidence index stands at 57.6, which more than doubles last year’s number of 28.6. Trisha McCarthy, President of the Association, says that a number of factors in the market are pointing towards improved realtor confidence.

McCarthy did note that problems are still sometimes common for buyers trying to finance a new home.

Chapin Fish, President of the Berkshire County Board of realtors said that for Berkshire County, said he has seen a small pickup in sales from premium-priced homes, which make up a large portion of the Southern Berkshire real estate market. On the local level, he said, prices overall are on the rise.

Fish added that he hopes to see the market improve, although the fall is typically a slower time for home sales. He said the best advice for those looking to sell their homes is to use local help.

Lucas Willard is a news reporter and host at WAMC Northeast Public Radio, which he joined in 2011. He produces and hosts The Best of Our Knowledge and WAMC Listening Party.
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