Utah Real Estate Brokers Sold More Homes in December- By: John Cutts
Real estate brokers in Utah were able to end 2010 in a somewhat optimistic note. Sales of housing units in most areas of the state remain slow for the whole of last year, but picked up considerably during the last month. December sales in several local markets posted increased month-over-month figures, according to real estate agents.
Sales of existing residential properties, including Lehi repossessed homes, surged in December 2010 in most local markets of Utah. According to the Salt Lake Board of Realtors, around 806 existing houses and condominium units were purchased by buyers in Salt Lake County last December. The total was down from the 886 that were sold in December of 2009, but higher than the November 2010 total sales of 742.
For the rest of 2010, sales of repo homes in Utah and other existing dwellings declined when compared with 2009 levels. In Salt Lake County, around 10,350 existing residential properties and condos were sold last year. Although full-year figures have yet to be gathered, analysts are estimating that the decline from the full 2009 figure was around 8%.
The decline in housing unit sales last year was largely attributed by real estate brokers to most buyers deciding to wait or opting to rent for fear that prices will further decline and their properties will lose more value. Housing prices last year were weighed down by the huge supplies of foreclosed houses and high unemployment rates all over the country, brokers also reported.
Despite the dismal full year housing statistics, December figures gave realtors and analysts some hope. Home buyers grabbed properties from repo homes lists and foreclosure listings at an annual speed of 5.28 million last December, representing a jump of 12.8% compared with November 2010. December home buying activities also recorded the strongest pace since May of 2009. For some, this could be a sign that 2011 will be a better year in terms of housing unit sales.
However, most real estate brokers believe that although housing markets all around the U.S., including Utah, will be improving soon, 2011 will not be the time when this will happen. But they stated that things are about to get better in 2012.
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John Cutts has been educated in the finer points of the foreclosure market over 5 years.