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Local Home Sales Dip In June But Prices Continue To Climb Steadily

Aug 12, 2019 08:22AM ● By Bill Gilman

Homes Sold.

 PEABODY – The median sale price for both single-family homes and condominiums continued their upward climb in June, reaching new highs in the process, according to a new report from The Warren Group, publisher of Banker & Tradesman. 

Last month, there were 6,523 single-family home sales recorded in Massachusetts, a 9.6 percent decrease from June 2018 when there were 7,217 transactions. Meanwhile, the median single-family sale price rose 2.1 percent on a year-over-year basis to $429,000, which marked an all-time high for single-family homes. Year-to-date, there have been 26,226 single-family home sales – a 1.1 percent decrease from the first six months of 2018 – with a median sale price of $395,000 – a 3.9 percent increase on the same basis. 

In Dracut, just 25 single-family homes were sold in June, down more than 30 percent from June 2018. Through the first 6 months of the year, 128 single-family homes have sold, down just over 5 percent from the same period a year ago.

However, despite the cooling off of the market, prices continue to rise. The median sale price of a single-family Dracut home sold in June was $383,000, up a substantial 7.9 percent over this time last year.

The news was similar in Tewksbury, where 39 single-family homes sold in June, down 7.1 percent over June 2018. Through the first six months of the year, sales are down 6.6 percent. But over that same period, the median sale price of a single-family home in Tewksbury has been $440,000, up 3.5 percent.

“The lack of supply in the Massachusetts housing market and its impact on prices has never been more evident,” said Tim Warren, CEO of The Warren Group. “Last month, I observed that a lack of new listings on the market would continue to add upward pressure to single-family home prices. This appears to have played out and could continue to do so during the remainder of the summer.”

Concurrently, there were 5,918 purchase mortgages for single-family homes in June, marking a 7.8 percent decrease on a year-over-year basis. June purchase mortgages totaled $2.48 billion – a 6.5 percent decrease from a year earlier. Year-to-date, single-family homes have accounted for 23,628 purchase mortgages across Massachusetts totaling $9.47 billion.

In June, there were 2,620 condominiums sales, compared to 2,969 sales in June 2018 – an 11.8 percent decrease. Meanwhile, the median sale price spiked 9.1 percent to $420,000 – the highest price ever recorded for condos, and the second consecutive month that the median sale price has exceeded $400,000. Year-to-date, there have been 11,368 condo sales with a median sale price of $380,000.

In Tewksbury, there have been 63 condo units sold through the first six months of 2019 (including 16 in June). That's an increase of 14.5 percent over the same period of time last year. The median price of those condo units sold was $341,000, up a modest 2.7 percent over the first six months of 2018.

In Dracut, just 19 condo units were sold in June, down a whopping 32.1 percent over June 2018. Sales over the first six months of the year are down a full 24 percent over the same period in 2018. The median sale price of the units sold over the first six months of 2019 has been $216,000, up a substantial 9.9 percent over the same period a year ago.

“The median condo price has now exceeded the $400,000 mark for two straight months,” Warren added. “While this isn’t a total surprise, a $20,000 price hike on a month-over-month basis is truly unprecedented.” 

Condos accounted for 1,973 purchase mortgages last month, totaling $798 million. Year-to-date, condos have accounted for 8,851 purchase mortgages totaling $3.21 billion.

Click here to listen to Timothy Warren Jr.'s thoughts on the Massachusetts housing market.

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