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Sales of N.C. existing homes stabilized in December

Posted January 27, 2009

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— Sales of existing homes in North Carolina stabilized in December after a dramatic drop in November, according to figures released Tuesday.

Statewide, 5,100 homes sold last month, which was a 3 percent increase over the 4,959 that sold the preceding month, according to the North Carolina Association of Realtors. November's sales were down 22 percent from October.

Still, existing home sales remain relatively weak, the group reported. Last month's sales were down 38 percent from December 2007, but the median sales price was off by only 8 percent, from $217,727 to $201,255.

In the Triangle, sales remained soft. Last month, 1,089 existing homes sold, down 8 percent from November and 47 percent from December 2007. The median sales price was flat from a year ago, at $236,888.

Fayetteville and Goldsboro were two of the strongest markets statewide last month. Sales in Fayetteville rose 20 percent over November, from 232 to 278, while Goldsboro reported a 51 percent jump in sales, from 39 to 59 homes.

Median prices in both markets were down 6 to 8 percent, however.

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  • simracer68 Jan 27, 2009

    Gatsby:

    Also, you appear to be thinking that everyone is using 100% financing. This is almost not possible anymore. FHA has become the "new" subprime (I guess the gub'ment didn't do enough damage the first time by pushing subprime as an avenue to home ownership to those that were underqualified - now they are the sole subprime "lender") and even FHA requires some $ down now. Most people buying homes today, outside of VA financing (still 1% down), are having to front at least 5% down. For more expensive homes ($250,000 +), it'll be more like 20% down required and their credit better be supreme at that - and the home had better genuinely appraise at the sales price or better.

    But again, the days of 100% financing are basically over - because that always leads to moving into a home 'upside down' when you add in closing costs, fees, etc. So take that $201,000-217,000 median price and subtract 5%-20% and recompute.

  • WFrules Jan 27, 2009

    We just had our home appraised and when we bought it in Oct. 2006 it was worth $26,000 more than the recent appraisal that we just had. This time we only had a drive by appraisal and I'm requesting a full appraisal so I'll be out $350 bucks, but the value should be higher with a full appraisal right? Our home is upgraded in the interior and the drive by did not account for that...

    How much has the home market went down in the Raleigh/surrounding areas by the way in the last 2 years?

  • Vincenzo R. Abacus Jan 27, 2009

    @Gatsby

    You're using median SALE figures for houses, but median income figures for ALL people - not just home buyers, and not even just home owners. While I doubt the real numbers are very rosy, I think your analysis is flawed.

    As a side note, does anyone think we'd be better off (well, except for realtors...) if you didn't have to have your home appreciate by 6% or more just to break even on the deal?

  • bs101fly Jan 27, 2009

    real estate folks want us to believe sales are flat or up slightly and that all is well. FACT: your public school system is crashing all around you, THAT will be the biggest deterrent to people moving here in future months and THE biggest deterrent when you go to sell your home!
    Will the real estate geniuses tell you that???
    Of course not, they might have to take a pay cut and lower their standard of living.

  • Gatsby Jan 27, 2009

    wcnc...I agree 100%. I know the median price in Raleigh claims to be $250K or so. That is a number that will fall along with the rest of the country unless McDonalds starts paying the cooks $25/Hr soon...

  • wcnc Jan 27, 2009

    Gatsby- Keep in mind the average is just that- an average. That means there are some that make less and some that make more. Obviously those who make more can afford more house. The problem we are in is that people wanted to buy more house than they could afford and the banks were very happy to lend them more than they could pay back. Stupid people and stupid lenders.....Also, people want what they want when they want it- they don't want to save for anything.....Recipe for the current crisis....

  • nerdlywehunt Jan 27, 2009

    Stabilized at the lower number of sales..........5000 sales for the entire state of NC....houses are popping up for sale like mushrooms in my neighborhood but none are selling. As people lose their jobs or get offers in other areas if they are underwater on their house they will just walk away like they are in Calif and Florida. They the spiral begins. Better hope the values stay up enough to not start the foreclosure waves.

  • Gatsby Jan 27, 2009

    "The median sales price was off by only 8 percent, from $217,727 to $201,255."
    _______________________________________________________

    So TurboTax (which cannot tell a lie) said that the avg American household has a gross income of 65K. That being the case the rule is never to use more than 28% (thats too much if you aske me) of that for your home mortgage payment. I figure that to be roughly $1500 a month so that means the Avg household can afford a home in the $175K - 200K range MAX unless they have a nice down-payment. If these families pay more than 200K they will not have money for 1) New Vehicles 2)Furniture 3) Eating out ...Would this not leave us in a severe recession or worse...a depression? Is that not where we are at?

    Home prices must come down or our wages must increase...the P/E does not work and the numbers don't lie.
    Try and catch a falling knife in the market and you will get cut.

  • wcnc Jan 27, 2009

    I don't think that foreclosure sales are considered in this sales amount...These are listings through a realtor that are closed on, not foreclosed homes sold by the bank.

    And the prices in NC weren't overinflated, as in some areas of the country, so they will fall less and probably rebound faster.

  • Beachnut Jan 27, 2009

    Another case of WRAL aiding and abetting the NC Realtors, who desparately want folks to think that prices here have found a bottom. They haven't! Sales quoted for this article very likely exclude distress sales, which tend to go on outside of the normal realestate process. If these were included, it's likely that prices overall would show more decline. With mounting job losses, it's hard to imagine how prices can avoid futher decline in 2009.

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