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RHODE ISLAND ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®, INC.

"The Voice of Real Estate in Rhode Island"
Serving Rhode Islanders Since 1948
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Press Release

Contact: Kerry Park
Ph: 401-432-6948
Cell: 401-207-4502
Email: kerry@rirealtors.org

FOR RELEASE: February 3, 2009

Condo Price Drops 3.8 Percent in 2008

Warwick, RI, Feb 2, 2009…Condominium sales statistics released today by the Rhode Island Association of Realtors, show a decrease in the number of condo sales, dropping 33 percent in 2008 compared to 2007.  Eighteen hundred and six (1806) condo sales were transacted in Rhode Island in 2007 compared to 1210 last year.  Median sales price declined slightly from $221,000 to 212,700, or 3.8 percent.

“The condo market held its own for much of the changing market until recently,” commented Paul Leys, President of the Rhode Island Association of Realtors.  “Now we’re seeing fewer sales and lower prices as foreclosures and short sales become more prevalent in this market segment.”  One hundred and fifty-four (154) of the sales – 12.7 percent - were distressed sales selling through short sale or foreclosure. The median price of non-distressed condo sales was $223,500.

The condo market remains however, the category of real estate least affected by distressed sales.  Slowing sales may be the result of developers choosing to rent, rather than sell units, while waiting for the market correction to complete.  This could also account for the lower percentage of distressed sales for condos as compared to single and multi-family sales.

The number of condo sales decreased most markedly during the fourth quarter of 2008, down 43.1 percent from 390 from October through December 2007 to 222 during the same time period last year.  Median price declined 10.1 percent from $224,750 to $202,000. Forty-seven (47) of the 222 fourth quarter sales, (21.2 percent) involved distressed properties.  The median price of non-distressed sales was $220,000.

In December, 2008, condo sales volume decreased to 72 sales from 109 sales in December,2007 or 33.94 percent.  Median price decreased 22.9 percent, from $254,000 to $195,900 during the same time period. Twenty (20) of the 72 sales in December were distressed sales. The median price of non-distressed sales was $228,450.

The number of available condos for sale during the last week in December fell 5.9 percent from the year prior, from 1639 to 1542.  “Though sales have slowed, inventory is down from a year ago. That’s the key to moving through this market cycle.  Forty-five percent of Rhode Island buyers are first-time home buyers, many of whom are interested in condos.  There are a lot of incentives now for first-time buyers, like low interest rates and the $7500 tax credit which should be particularly helpful in decreasing inventory in the condo market,” said Leys.    


Paul Leys

2009 REALTOR®
State President

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View 2008 Year End
Condo Sales

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View 2008 4th Quarter
Condo Sales

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View December 2008
Condo Sales

About the Rhode Island Association of REALTORS®

The Rhode Island Association of REALTORS┬«, one of the largest trade organizations in Rhode Island with more than 7,000 members in approximately 900 offices, has been serving Rhode Islanders since 1948. Collectively, RI REALTORS┬« transacted nearly $7.9 billion in residential real estate sales last year and nearly $8.1 billion in total transactions including rentals and commercial real estate. Advocating for Rhode Island's property owners, the Rhode Island Association of REALTORS® provides a facility for professional development, research and exchange of information among its members and to the public and government for the purpose of preserving the free enterprise system and the right to own real property.

The Association is one of more than 1,400 boards and associations that comprise the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). The National Association of Realtors®, “The Voice for Real Estate,” is America's largest trade association, representing over 1.4 million members involved in all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries and who subscribe to a strict Code of Ethics.

REALTOR® is a federally registered collective membership mark which identifies a real estate professional who is member of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® and subscribes to its strict Code of Ethics.