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NETAR: March home sales down slightly but up in first quarter

Hank Hayes • Apr 15, 2020 at 10:30 PM

GRAY — Tri-Cities home sales were down 8.4% from March last year and up 1.1% from the first quarter of 2019, according to a report released Tuesday by the Northeast Tennessee Association of Realtors (NETAR).

NETAR reported there were 568 single-family, townhome, and condominium resale closings, down from 620 last year. During the first three months of this year, 1,514 sales closed, up from 1,497 last year. March’s average resale price of $189,087 was a 7.6% improvement ($13,343) over last year, according to NETAR’s Trends Report.

“There’s no way around the fact that COVID-19 will deter sales during this year’s prime buying and selling season. But most activity is expected to return later in the year,” NETAR President Kristi Bailey said. “So far, the impact has been minimal. Traffic is down, but prices are stable. Local activity began softening in mid-March, but considering the circumstances, market performance was pretty good. Local sellers had accepted 798 new contracts by the end of the month. That’s 21 more than February. All but three of the region’s primary city markets saw a first-quarter sales increase. And five had higher quarterly price averages. At the end of March, the region had 3.7 months of inventory. Balanced market conditions are five to six months of inventory. That’s something we haven’t seen for over a year.”

The average number of days a single-family detached resale was on the market last month was 121, up from 105 in February. It was 101 days for a townhome/condo resale — up from 88 days in February.

There were 521 single-family resales in March, down 8.3% (47 sales) from last year. The average sales price of $191,514 was up 6% ($10,851). Quarterly sales were 2.3% better than last year.

March’s 47 townhome/condo closings were down five sales from March last year, while the average resale price of $162,423 was up 29.4% ($36,393). Quarterly sales were up 6.1% from the first three months of last year.

NETAR’s Trends Report reflects housing market conditions in Carter, Greene, Hawkins, Johnson, Sullivan, Unicoi, and Washington counties in Northeast Tennessee and Scott, Lee, Wise, and Washington counties in Southwest Virginia. It also includes market data from the region’s primary city markets. City and county market share, year-over-year and year-to-date closings and average sales prices are available on the NETAR website’s market analytics page at https://netar.us/market-analytics.

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