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April Home Sales Drop in Bay State

April sales of Massachusetts single-family homes dropped 2.3 percent compared with the same month last year, according to the latest from the Warren Group.

The percentage decline represents a decrease from 3,508 last year to 3,427 in April.

According to the group's study, April is the third consecutive month in which sales decreased compared with the same month in 2013, contributing to a year-to-date decrease of 2.4 percent.

Only 10,984 homes have been sold so far in 2014 versus 11,253 during the same period last year.

Timothy M. Warren Jr., CEO of the Warren Group, said, "[I]t is a bit of a surprise that we are not seeing more forward momentum," but also noted while these sales might have "closed in April ... the buyers were shopping and negotiating back in February, the middle of a brutal winter," meaning the latest figures are "not a reflection of the strength of the spring market."

As sales fell, the median price for single-family homes continued to rise, marking the 19th consecutive month it has increased statewide. As the Warren Group's data shows, while the median price only rose 0.6 percent to $315,000 from $313,000 last April, year-to-date, prices were up 5.2 percent from $294,000 in 2013 to $309,350 this year.

In contrast to home sales, April condominium sales in Massachusetts increased 7.0 percent to 1,596 from 1,493 last April.  This, according to the Warren Group, is the 10th consecutive month of increasing condo sales with a 10.5 percent gain year-to-date.

The median sales price increase for condos was more impressive, posting a 10.7 percent increase to $310,000 for April compared to $280,000 a year prior. As Warren explained, "Condos are proving to be a very popular segment of the market and the high demand is driving up the prices. For April, the median price of a condo is just $5,000 below the median price of a single-family home. Ten years ago the difference was $72,000."

About Author: James Ames

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James Ames is a third-year Law Student at SMU Dedman Law. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree with a major in political science and minor in psychology from Southern Methodist University and has previously worked in the banking industry focusing on various areas, including loan origination, home equity, investment banking, and business banking. His focus in law school is on civil litigation, especially business litigation, as well as law as it relates to business and real estate transactions.
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