Friday, March 21, 2008

Collapsedachusetts Existing Home Sales Preview: February 2008

Sources inside the Massachusetts Association of Realtors (MAR) report that next week’s monthly existing home sales results will show that February single family home sales crashed 22.9% on a year-over-year basis while condo sales collapsed 34.6% over the same period.

Further, the single family median home value declined 4.6% on a year-over-year basis to $310,000 while condo median prices decreased 6.7% to $252,000.

It’s also important to note that February’s single family home sales count was the lowest February count on record since 1996 and at 1857 units sold was 26.91% below the record peak set in February 1999 and 22.9% below the more recent peak of February 2007.

The following charts (click for larger) show the decline in single family home sales since 2005.

Notice that February 2008 is registering a home sales count well below even the 2007 level as well as indicating that the March’s results will likely be well below 3000 units, a significant decline.

After over two years of declining home sales, weakening home prices and now looming recession it appears that Massachusetts may have just entered the price “free-fall” phase of the housing decline where home prices continuously drop even through the spring months which are typically strong in the region.

Stay tuned as next week's S&P/Case-Shiller home price index results will be available for Boston likely showing the most significant decline in the last 12 months.