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Boston Real Estate News: Buyer Activity Remains Strong in August

The Massachusetts Association of REALTORS (MAR) reported that very strong buyer activity in August pushed pending home sales up over 40 percent from the same month last year.

There was no slowdown this summer as buyers continued to be out there making offers that sellers were happy to accept, said 2015 MAR President Corinne Fitzgerald. Buyer activity should remain strong with the only variable being the recent volatility in the stock market.

Looking more specifically to the Greater Boston area, new listings were up 14% for single-family homes and 17.1% for condominiums according to the Greater Boston Association of Realtors (GBAR).

Greater Boston Single- Family Market Overview

August 2014 August 2015 +/-
Closed Sales 1,516 1,720 +13.5%
Median Sales Price $490,000 $499,900 +2.0%
Days on Market Until Sale 60 61 +2.9%
New Listings 1,267 1,445 +14.0%

After declining during three of the first five months of the year, sales of detached single-family homes improved in August on an annual basis for a third consecutive month. The months sales volume is the most ever recorded for the month of August in Greater Boston, surpassing the previous record of 1,694 homes sold in August 2013.

The median selling price for single-family homes rose for an eleventh consecutive month in August to a new record high price of $499,900. This median selling price reflects todays tight inventory levels, improved optimism about the economy and housing market, pent-up demand from millennials looking to transition from renters to homeowners and empty-nesters looking to downsize and cash in on strong gains in their homes value in recent years.

Greater Boston Condominium Market Overview

August 2014 August 2015 +/-
Closed Sales 1,138 1,190 +4.6%
Median Sales Price $419,000 $460,000 +9.8%
Days on Market Until Sale 52 46 -12.5%0
New Listings 777 910 +17.1%

The median selling price for condominiums rose steadily on an annual basis last month, increasing nearly 10 percent from a median price of $419,000 in August 2014 to an all-time high monthly median of $460,000 this past August.

Demand for condos remains strong, especially among entry-level buyers looking to convert from renting to home ownership, overseas investors, and suburban empty-nesters looking to downsize or relocate to Boston. Indeed, sales activity would likely be higher if not for the very limited supply of condos available for sale in eastern Massachusetts.

The healthy sales pace of late can be attributed to steady job growth and the overall health of the local economy, near record low mortgage rates, and recent improvement in household formation. This years severe winter weather also delayed the start of the traditional spring market, resulting in a higher than normal closing activity over the summer months.

Find more in-depth August market data for the Greater Boston area here.

About the Greater Boston Association of Realtors: The Greater Boston Association of REALTORS (GBAR) represents over 6,500 real estate professionals throughout the Greater Boston and Eastern Massachusetts area and is one of the local boards of the National Association of REALTORS the largest trade association in America. GBAR provides professional development courses, standard forms, legal reports and updates, brokerage counseling, legislative and regulatory representation, ethics, mediation and arbitration services, as well as recognition awards.

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