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Press Release

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


Realtor Data Shows Home Sales Continued to Climb in September

Warwick, RI, October 27, 2009…According to data released by the Rhode Island Association of Realtors today, Rhode Island existing single family home sales rose 27.9 percent in September and the number of days a single family home stayed on the market dropped to 87 from a high of 109 earlier this year.  Sales activity appears to be spurred by the $8000 tax credit from the federal government available to eligible buyers.  The number of single family homes available for sale has dropped steadily since June, falling more than 20 percent from September 2008 to September 2009.  There is currently a 6.8 month supply of single family homes for sale.  A six- month supply of inventory indicates parity between buyers and sellers and thus, a balanced market.  Inventory has decreased from a 14-month supply in January.

The median price – the midpoint where half the homes sold for more and half sold for less- fell 8.2 percent year to year, from $219,000 in September 2008 to $201,050 this year. Two hundred and twenty-seven (227) of the 762 total sales fell into the distressed category. Prices have fallen by smaller percentages in recent months, likely due to the decreased percentage of distressed sales.  The median price of non-distressed properties was $230,000.

The number of sales in the multi-family market fell for the first time this year, down 2.4 percent in September. The decrease follows months of double digit sales increases. The number of sales in the multi-family market was up by as much as 152 percent from the year prior in January; it remained up by 37 percent in August.  The median price of a multi-family property fell 15.2 percent from September 2008 to September 2009 to $114,425.  The September price however, represented a significant increase from the August median price of $80,000.  Prices had been down by as much as 55 percent earlier this year from the same time period in 2008.  The number of distressed sales decreased to 63.4 percent from 77 percent the month prior.  The median price of non-distressed multi-family properties was $165,200. Inventory decreased 30 percent from September 2008.

“It seems that we may have hit bottom in the multi-family market,” commented Paul Leys, President of the Rhode Island Association of Realtors. “Investors and first-time buyers were snapping up investment properties at fire sale prices but the frenzy seems to have slowed.  Prices in this market are finally beginning to stabilize.  We’re seeing less than a six-month of supply of multi-family homes on the market which indicates a seller’s market. ”

Prices and sales also appear to be moderating in the condominium market.  September condo sales saw a median price of $180,000, down 5.3 percent from a year ago.  Prices had been down 24 percent in July and nearly 20 percent in August from the year prior.  The median price of condos selling though conventional means, not short sale or foreclosure, was $229,500.  The number of condo sales increased from September 2008 to September 2009 by 13.8 percent, following a decrease in sales in August of 6.2 percent. Condo sales had been extremely slow at the beginning of the year, down 42.5 percent from early 2008. Condo inventory has decreased markedly, down 21 percent year to year in September, resulting in an 8-month supply of condominiums on the market.

“Overall, though prices are still down, the percentage of price decline is much less in all three categories than it was earlier this year and inventory has dropped which is bringing supply and demand into balance. We’re starting to see more normal conditions,” said Leys.

The federal $8000 tax credit to buyers who have not owned a home in three years or more is set to expire on November 30, 2009. The National Association of Realtors is lobbying for an extension of the credit.  Realtors believe that the extension is critical to continued recovery of the housing market.  To date, it has been extended into 2010 for military personnel only.


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.