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Press Release

Contact: Kerry Park
Ph: 401-432-6948
Cell: 401-207-4502


May Home Sales Up

Warwick, RI, June 22, 2009…Rhode Island existing single family home sales continued to see an increase in sales and median price in May.  The number of homes sold increased 2.2 percent in May of this year from May 2008 and rose 25.9 percent from the prior month.  Pending sales were up 24 percent from the previous year. Rhode Island single family pending sales represent homes under contract but not yet closed. The median single family home price rose in May to $190,000 from $183,000 in April, but remained below the $252,500 median price of May, 2008. 

Thirty-four (34.2) percent of May’s single family sales were sold through short sale or foreclosure, down from 42 percent in April. The median price of non-distressed transactions was $225,000.  Providence, Warwick, Cranston and Pawtucket led the state in the number of distressed single family sales in May.

“We’re moving in the right direction.  It’s a slow process but we seem to be better able to absorb foreclosures now,” said Paul Leys, President of the Rhode Island Association of Realtors.  Leys also explained that the number of foreclosures in Rhode Island is not expected to spike in the coming months due to the end of foreclosure moratoriums, as is the case in many other states.

Sales in the condo market rose 21 percent from April to May but were down considerably from the year prior, declining 35 percent from 140 sales in May 2008 to 91 in May of this year.  The median condo price decreased 31.3 percent from the year prior to $159,000 and nearly 20 (19.7) percent from the April 2009 median price of $198,000.  Just over 30 percent of the condo sales involved short sales or foreclosures.  The non-distressed median price was $184,000.

“Condos were the last to see the effects of the housing downturn and now they’re playing catch-up in the correction,” commented Leys.  “We’ve seen no particular price trend in recent months. They seem to be up one month and down the next.  Condo statistics can skew widely on the success or failure of a handful of particular complexes,” he explained.

In the multi-family category, sales were up from May 2008 by 46.2 percent but down from April to May 22.3 percent.  Median price rose from the month prior to $82,000 in May from $69,900 in April.  Prices remained considerably lower than a year prior however, when the median price of multi-family properties was $158,500.  The most severely affected by distressed sales of all types of real estate, multi-family foreclosures and short sales accounted for 79.3 percent of this type of sale.

“I think we’re seeing rising prices in the multi-family market because there are a lot of buyers competing with each other now.  They’re starting to realize that bids have to be reasonable or they’re not going to get the property in the end,” said Leys.  “The clearance sale mentality may be waning.  With the $8000 tax credit incentive to first time homebuyers ending this November, and the possibility of rising interest rates, I’m advising buyers to get off the fence if they’re serious about buying,” he added.

Paul Leys

State President


Single Family Sales
By Town

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.