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DS News Webcast: Tuesday 4/22/2014

Following weak home sales from extreme winter weather, March sales picked up 24.6 percent across the 52 metros measured in the RE/MAX National Housing Report. Despite the significant increase, March sales are 10.1 percent below their year-ago level. With sales rebounding just in time for the spring homebuying season, the market continues to demonstrate its persistent trends of rising prices and low inventory. Current inventory stands at a 4.1 month supply. A 6 month supply indicates a balanced market.

As a result of low inventory, homes continue to fly off the market rather quickly. For the past 22 months, the average home sold was listed for sale for fewer than 90 days. In March, the average home sold spent 77 days on the market, which pushed prices ever higher. The median sales price in March was roughly $186,000, demonstrating a 3.6 percent increase over the month and an 8.8 percent increase from last year. March marks the 26th consecutive month of home price increases.

According to the latest HousingPulse Tracking Survey, an estimated 26.2 percent of home purchases in March relied solely on cash, up from a 12-month low of 22.8 percent recorded last August. While cash sales are usually associated with investors looking to profit from their purchases, the Housing Pulse survey said they've become more popular with average American homebuyers hoping to avoid closing delays and gain an advantage over their competition. 24 percent of transactions experienced delays last month, according to the survey.

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