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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Febuary home sales leap 12.8%!!!

Finally, some good news! This morning's Detroit Free Press carried a story under the 30-Point banner headline above on the Business Page. The article by Greta Guest went on to say that figures released by Realcomp, the largest local Multi-List Service (MLS) pegged the February sales at 3,591 homes and condos in the metro area in February. In Detroit the increase was most dramatic with 49.4% more homes selling this year compared to last year - 804 in 2008 compared with only 538 in 2007.

The president of Realcomp, Karen Kage was quoted as saying that the reason for trhe rise is that "many of last year's foreclosures are being sold and with prices way down, as much as 15% in some areas, and interest rates stabilizing, buyers are beginning to step forward." Kage went on to say "We started to see things go up in the fourth quarter of last year but nothing like we are seeing now." She continued, "We are optimistic that sales will continue to rise."

Kage was particularly enthusiastic for first time buyers, saying,” If you are a first time buyer, I have never in my 30 years in the business seen a better time to buy." If you are a first time buyer, I recommend a visit to my Web site for first time buyers - for lots of useful information and tips.

The report from Realcomp included this information about other areas in the local market. Macomb County Sales rose by 21.7% in February up from 397 in 2007 to 483 this year. Oakland County sales rose 7.54% from 761 to 818. Livingston County sales rose to 104 for 87, an increase of 19.5%. Wayne County sales rose 28.1% from 1,156 last year to 1,481 in February of 2008. Only St Clair County locally reported a loss in sales to 87 properties verses 96 last year, a drop of 9.4%

So, finally we have good news. Does this report potent a trend? Only time will tell. It certainly bears out the anecdotal inputs that I’ve been hearing around our local real estate office and the experiences that I’ve had lately with buyers. There’s definitely something good happening. I’m not sure that it’s just not the relief that something even worse is not happening, again; or whether we have indeed reached a bottom point and the start of a turn-around. I guess that I’ll hope that it is the latter.

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