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Market Insights




by John W. Rice


PORTSMOUTH-Sales of single-family homes in the nine sample Seacoast towns slumped 46% from September and 34% from 2007 October totals.

            "Given the news from Wall Street and a modest number of September pending sales this is not surprising," said Seacoast Board of REALTORS President John Rice. "And we do well to remember that October is not exactly prime time in real estate anyway."

            The number of active residential listings declined 7.9%--also a typical and healthy trend for this time of year, according to Rice.

            Interestingly, upper-end sales held their own for the third straight month with five sales of $700,000 or more including a $2.5 million closing on Sea Road in Rye. There were six such high end sales in August and five in September.

            Meanwhile condo sales for the month exceeded 2007 closings by 3.5%, the first time in more than a year that monthly condo sales totals exceeded the same month the year before. Sales were up an impressive 31.8% from September, which, so far, was the third-best month for condo closings this year.

 But pending sales tumbled to their lowest level in more than a year, falling 34.6% from last month. Available inventory declined 7.6%.

"Buyers are out there looking for bargains and they are finding them," Rice said. "With uncertainty in the financial sector, we may be seeing investors turning to real estate."






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