Press Release: Cincinnati Area Real Estate March Sales Update

Press Release

Cincinnati Area Board of Realtors®


The following press release was sent to the local media today at 10:20 a.m.


April 19, 2012


Contact:          Tom Hasselbeck, CABR President, 513-829-0044 , 513-607-3868 [cell]

                        Gene Snavley, CABR Exec.Vice President, 513-543-2211 [cell]


Home Sales Up 9 Months in a Row;

Year-to-Date Sales Up 9%

            Local home sales in March – for the 9th consecutive month – improved over a year ago. Sales in March totaled 1,505 units, a 1% gain over the same month a year ago when 1,490 homes were sold.

            “Mortgage rates remain at historical lows, the housing inventory is increasing and higher consumer confidence were all contributing factors that helped prospective buyers to stop looking and buy,” said Tom Hasselbeck, president of the Cincinnati Area Board of Realtors.

            Local mortgage rates in March averaged 4.01%.  That’s down from 4.82% a year ago.  This week, they’re at 3.87%. 

            Average home sale price last month was $144,346, up +8.44% from a year earlier. “This is a result of more sellers putting their homes on the market and buyers taking advantage of this newer inventory,” said Hasselbeck. 

            The first quarter is generally the weakest sales period of the year for closings. This year, however, the first three months are up nearly 9% from a year earlier.  “This is a great start to what looks to be a very positive 2012 for home sales with an improving economy,” said Hasselbeck.     

            The local housing inventory has been on a growth path since December.  “We have seen an increase in the number of non-lender involved inventory and buyers are excited about this,” said Hasselbeck.  “This means that when you combine low interest rates, higher consumer confidence and great housing values, now — more than ever — is a great time to buy.” 

            To help further stimulate the local real estate market, this weekend Realtors will be participating in the tri-state Open House Weekend, April 21-22.  This is an opportunity for buyers to visit homes they may be interested in and for sellers to open their doors to those potential buyers.

March Home Sales


Summary of Single Family and Condominium Sales

Multiple Listing Service of Greater Cincinnati

Cincinnati Area Board of Realtors®


March Home Sales


                                                            Closings          Gross Volume         Average Price          

                        March 2012                  1,505              $217,240,287              $144,346

March 2011                 1,490              $198,332,403              $133,109        

Variance          +1.01%                        +9.53%                +8.44%



Year-to-Date Home Sales


                                                            Closings          Gross Volume          Average Price         

Jan-Mar. 2012                3,662             $505,716,979            $138,099                

Jan-Mar. 2011                3,361             $464,846,681             $138,306        

                                     Variance           +8.96%                      +8.79%                 – 0.15%



Nationwide, March home sales were down 2.6% from February on a seasonally

adjusted basis, but up 5.2% from March 2011.


Published in: Uncategorized on May 3, 2012 at 04:39  Leave a Comment  

Home Price Index (HPI): Home Values Rising Nationwide

Home Price Index (HPI): Home Values Rising Nationwide | Mortgage Rates And News From The Mortgage Reports Blog.


Home Price Index (HPI): Home Values Rising Nationwide

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Home Price Index off less than 20% from April 2007 housing peakAre home prices rising or falling? It’s a tough question — especially because the answer depends on where you get your facts. It also matters  how old those facts just happen to be.

Click here to get today’s mortgage rates.

HPI Rises 0.3% In February

Each month, the government’s Federal Home Finance Agency — the overseer of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — publishes the Home Price Index.

The Home Price Index measures the change in appraised value of the same home between successive FHFA-backed transactions (i.e. home purchase, home refinance), then uses those changes to track home valuations nationwide.

According to the Home Price Index, home values rose a seasonally-adjusted 0.3 percent between January and February 2012, and up 0.4% since last February. The data runs counter to Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller Index which shows home values in decline.

The February Case-Shiller Index has values down more than 3 percent since last year.

In contrast to the HPI, Case-Shiller uses purchase contracts only; tracks single-family homesales only; and accounts for home sales in just a handful of cities nationwide.

Click here to get today’s mortgage rates.

Colorado, Arizona Among Top States

Like everything in real estate, home values are a local phenomenon. In February, not every U.S. region show rising values.

According the Home Price Index, some areas experienced relatively large gains — the Mountain Region gained 1.9% in February — and others experiences relatively large losses. The West North Central Region shed 1.0 percent.

Other regional highlights include :

  • New England Region (Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut) : + 0.8%
  • Pacific Region (Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California) : -0.9%
  • South Atlantic Region (Delaware, Maryland, District of Columbia, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida) : 0.9%

Even regional notes, however, aren’t telling enough. On a city-by-city basis, and on a street-by-street level, housing markets can vary.

Click here to get today’s mortgage rates.

The Flaw In The Home Price Index

As a home buyer or seller, published data showing “rising home values” or “falling home values” may be interesting, but it’s not necessarily relevant. Most home valuation trackers — including the government’s Home Price Index and the private sector Case-Shiller Index — come standard with a severe, built-in flaw.

Both used “aged” data.

Today, the calendar reads May. Yet, we’re still discussing February’s housing data. Data from February has little value buyers and sellers in May’s housing market. And, even then, characterizing the data as “from February” is somewhat of a stretch. This is because the home values used in both the Home Price index and the Case-Shiller Index are collected from actual mortgage transactions, which are recorded at closing — not at the time of sale.

Click here to get today’s mortgage rates.

This affects valuation trackers because on a purchase, the sale price is often agreed upon 45-60 days prior to closing. Yet, those values don’t reach the Home Price Index or the Case-Shiller Index until two month later. For refinances, the lag between appraisal and closing is typically 30 days.

Therefore, when we look at the Home Price Index and Case-Shiller Index reports, what we’rereally seeing is a snapshot of housing as it was 5 months ago. Data like that is of little relevance to today’s buyers and sellers. Today’s real estate market is driven by today’s supply-and-demand — not February’s.

The Home Price Index and Case-Shiller Index are useful gauges for economists and law-makers looking at long-term trends. For buyers and sellers, though, they’re less relevant. Real-time data is what matters most.

Click here to get today’s mortgage rates.


Whether you’re buying a home or refinancing one, home valuations matters. But, so do mortgage rates. Rising mortgage rates will do more to change your home affordability than rising home prices ever could. A 1% rise in mortgage rates takes 11 percent off your purchasing power.

Take a look at today’s low mortgage rates. Plan your budget accordingly.

Click here to get today’s mortgage rates.

Courtesy of Dan Green

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