Friday, April 27, 2012

Home sales looking up: Sales reach four-year high

Tulsa-area home sales aren't just having a better year - they're having the best year so far since 2008. Approximately 992 homes changed hands during March, according to data from the Greater Tulsa Association of Realtors. That's a 28.5 percent increase from February and a 28 percent increase from March 2011. The three-month total of 2,446 is 23.5 percent above the total for the same time period of last year and is the highest recorded in the area since 2008. It also marks a full 12-month streak of year-over-year monthly home sales improvements. March's local figures were better than the overall U.S. performance. National sales of single-family home sales declined 2.5 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.97 million in March from 4.07 million in February but are 5.9 percent above the 3.75 million-unit pace a year ago, according to figures from the National Association of Realtors. Rodger Erker, president of the Greater Tulsa Association of Realtors, said traffic at local real estate agencies has picked up dramatically over the past few months. "Back last year, an open house might draw three or four groups looking at it," he said. "Now we're getting 15 or 16." Sheryl Chinowth, broker/owner and CEO of Chinowth & Cohen Realtors, said her business has already generated $20 million more in sales so far this year compared to this time last year and sellers are seeing more competition. "We're starting to see some homes with multiple offers coming in," she said. Chinowth and Erker both said that improved consumer confidence is the main factor bringing buyers back into the market after worries about a collapsing national home market and unemployment kept them on the sidelines. "Job confidence is certainly a good thing for us," Erker said. ROBERT EVATT World Staff Writer Published: 4/26/2012 2:36 AM Last Modified: 4/26/2012 7:46 AM

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