This past February saw 1,515 reported home closings, a number 33.6% higher than February 2011’s 1,134 reported closings. Year-t0-date closings were up, too, with the total through February 2012 being at 2,892 up from 2,235 reported through February 2011.
GNAR President Kendra Cooke says the recent news that Tennessee’s unemployment rate fell below the national average may contribute to the increase in home purchases and pending sales, a trend she says she believes may continue into the spring.
“Housing enjoys the position of both contributing to and benefitting from a decline in unemployment. According to the National Association of Realtors, one new job is created for every two homes sold, and an additional $60,000 is pumped into the economy per home sold. As the weather turns warmer and we enter the official spring buying and selling season, we’re hopeful to see the sustainability of the trends we’ve experienced over the past few months. The overall outlook for the real estate market is improving,” Cooke said.
1,832 homes had pending sales at the end February 2012 in comparison to 1,416 at the same time last year. The average time on the market for a single family home was 96 days.
The median residential price for a single family home during February 2012 was $159,900 and for a condo, $145,000; those compared to February 2011 prices of $169,900 and $132,000, respectively.
Real estate inventory is slightly down from last year’s 20,997 at 18,271, but Cooke is confident that the spring buying and selling season will cause an increase in inventory.