Mass. home sales drop in Feb., as condos rival single-family on price

Massachusetts single-family home sales fell 4.1 percent in February compared with the same month a year earlier, the third decline in sales in the last four months, according to a report released Wednesday by The Warren Group. More

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Mass. home sales drop in Feb., as condos rival single-family on price

BLOOMBERG FILE PHOTO/TY WRIGHT
THE MEDIAN PRICE of a single-family home in Massachusetts was $285,500 in February, lower than the median condominium price of $290,000, The Warren Group said Wednesday.
Posted 3/26/14

BOSTON – Massachusetts single-family home sales fell 4.1 percent in February compared with the same month a year earlier, the third decline in sales in the last four months, according to a report released Wednesday by The Warren Group.

A total of 2,078 homes sold in the Bay State last month, down from 2,166 sales in February 2013. In Bristol County alone, however, sales increased 6.6 percent to 179 sales from 168 sales in February 2013.

Year-to-date sales also improved in Bristol County, rising 8.2 percent to 384 sales compared with 355 sales during the same period the year before. Statewide, year-to-date sales inched upward nine-tenths of a percent to 4,806 sales in the first two months of 2014 from 4,765 sales for those two months in 2013.

Timothy M. Warren Jr., CEO of The Warren Group, attributed the statewide sales drop in February to lack of inventory – an issue, he said, that has “plagued the market for months.”

“These February sales numbers represent closings on homes that went under agreement in December, for the most part,” said Warren. “Cold weather and holidays are certainly factors in making February traditionally the slowest month of the year.”

The median price of a Massachusetts single-family home continued to climb in February, rising to $285,500 from $280,000 in February 2013. The median price has increased every month since September 2012, The Warren Group said.

The median price for homes sold January through February was $300,000, an increase of 7.1 percent compared with the $280,000 median price for the same 2013 period.

Bristol County’s median price for February was $231,500, which represented an 8.7 percent increase over the February 2013 price of $213,000. Year-to-date, the median home price in Bristol County increased 3.1 percent to $230,000 from $223,000.

In February, condominium sales statewide totaled 947, a gain of 6.5 percent from 889 a year earlier. Year-to-date condo sales posted an increase nearly 11.8 percent, rising to 2,091 from 1,870 during the same period in 2013.

Bristol County condo sales gained 28.6 percent in February to 36 from 28 in February 2013. Year-to-date condo sales through the end of the month totaled 84, compared with 61 during the same two-month period last year.

The median condo price in Massachusetts rose 12.4 percent from a year earlier in February to $290,000, higher than the median single-family home price in February of $285,500. The year-to-date median price of condos in the Bay State was also $290,000, 18.4 percent greater than in the same period last year.

The median condo price in Bristol County fell 4.8 percent in February to $152,250, with a year-to-date increase of 12.9 percent to $164,750.

The Warren Group is the Boston-based publisher of Banker & Tradesman, The Commercial Record and a series of association publications.

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