Triangle home sales up 9 percent in November

Dec. 12, 2013 @ 07:55 PM

Triangle home sales were up 9.6 percent in November, ending the streak of double-digit increases seen monthly in the year.
Median and average prices rose in Wake County, according to Triangle Multiple Listing Service data for the month, but declined or rose only by a small margin in Durham, Orange and Johnston counties.
The Triangle’s lower sales increase in the month was something that Stacey Anfindsen, a residential real estate appraiser and market analyst for Birch Appraisal group in Cary, said was going to happen.
The market picked up around November of last year, he said, so the comparative percentage increase in the month this year is not going to be as great, he said. Prior to the uptick last year, sales were better in 2012 than 2011, but “not very good.”
Anfindsen also said he believes the market is nearing the point where sales will not be able to grow as much, given the size of the inventory of homes on the market.
“Like any other thing that is sold, if you can only make 1,000 widgets a year, that’s all you can sell,” he said.
He also said he believes the area needs to see more employment growth to drive more sales. In Wake County, only 119 more people were employed in October of this year compared to last year, according to data from the N.C. Department of Commerce’s Labor and Economic Analysis Division. In the same period, homes sales grew 12 percent.
Comparatively in Durham County, 819 more people had jobs. Home sales were up 25 percent in October.
In Durham County in November, homes sales were up 3 percent compared to the same month last year.
The median sales price was down 3.2 percent year-over-year, and the average sales price was down 0.6 percent to $196,579. Anfindsen said he believes that’s probably a sign that buyers are buying lower-priced homes.
In Orange County, sales were down about 17 percent. The median sales price was down 18.8 percent to $264,000, and the average sales price was down 10.8 percent to $304,931.