Area home sales continue downward spiral

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Home-sale agreements in the nine-county central Indiana region dropped 17.5 percent in November compared to the same month a year ago, according to a report released Monday morning by F.C. Tucker Co.

Pending home sales dropped last month to 1,222, down from 1,481 in November 2009, the Indianapolis-based real estate company said.

The decline marked the seventh straight month that year-over-year home sales have slumped in central Indiana following three straight months of improving sales activity spurred by generous federal tax credits.

Pending sales were down 40 percent in October, 23 percent in September, 23 percent in August, 27 percent in July, 30 percent in June, and 32 percent in May.

Pending home sales account for sales agreements, not sales that have closed.

Year-to-date, sales are off 10.1 percent from the same period in 2009, the report said.

In Marion County, November sales agreements fell 18.2 percent compared with the previous year, from 691 to 565.

Pending sales dropped 21.2 percent in Hamilton County, from 292 to 230, and 6.2 percent in Hendricks County, from 113 to 106. Only one area county, Hancock, saw an increase in sales, from 53 to 56.

One bright spot in the residential market has been average sale prices. Through November, the average sale price of a home sold in central Indiana has been $150,130, up 8.2 percent from the same 11-month period of 2009, the report said.

Active listings have increased 1.6 percent in the area, from 14,912 to 15,151.

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