Real estate is officially a hot investment again.
The Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors (MAAR) announced Wednesday that for the sixth consecutive month, local real estate prices were up in August on a year-over-year basis. The median price, region wide, was up 15.5 percent from the same month last year, to $179,000. And the average sales price was $222,922, up 10.4 percent and marking the seventh consecutive month of annual increases.
Even in the boom period from January 2003 to January 2004, median prices in the Twin Cities area were only increasing by about 7 percent a year.
APPLE VALLEY STATISTICS
The median sales price in Apple Valley in August was $188,950, a staggering 25.5-percent higher than the same month last year. The average sales price increased 29.2 percent on a year-over-year basis, jumping to $215,040.
On average, sellers received 98 percent of their asking prices last month, compared to 90.8 percent a year ago. And, the average time a home stayed on the market dropped 42.7 percent, to 87 days.
Eighty home sales closed in Apple Valley last month, the same number that sold in August 2011.
Click here to see Apple Valley’s local market update.
Rosement sales figures for August buck the trend of positive news.
The median sales price in Rosemount last month was $157,700, down 12.7 percent from the same month last year. The drip was even more dramatic in the average sale price, which fell 19.3 percent to $189,337.
On the bright sale, the percentage of original list price received last month was 1.4 percent better than August 2011. And, the average time a home stay on the market fell 13.4 percent, to 110 days.
Thirty-seven home sales closed in Rosemount in August, two fewer than the same time last year.
Click here to see Rosemount’s local market update.
Regionwide, nearly every housing market measure has indicated improvement for at least six months now. In August, for instance:
• There were 4,877 pending sales, up 19.5 percent and marking the 16th consecutive month of increase.
• There were 4,883 closed sales, up 12.3 percent, marking the 14th consecutive month of increase.
• In June 2012, closed sales fell just six units short of a nearly six-year high.
Part of the reason for rising prices is supply, which has declined compared to demand. In August, there were 16,348 homes for sale, down 30.5 percent from the same month last year and marking the 19th consecutive month of decreases. Inventory levels are at their lowest since the hot market of December 2003, a nearly nine-year low.
Inventory levels, in fact, have come down a total of 54.5 percent from their July 2007 peak, when the market was at its worst.
"With inventory levels nearing 10-year lows, buyers are scrambling to find the perfect house," said Cari Linn, MAAR’s president. "The next step of recovery will be getting hesitant … sellers back into the market."
Also, the “distressed” market is making less and less of an impact on Twin Cities area home prices; in August, foreclosures and short sales comprised less than a third of the new listings, a far lower rate than was seen during the depths of the area’s real estate downturn.