(KCPW News) Home sales in Utah for all housing types dropped 34 percent this October when compared to sales in October of 2009. Dave Anderton of the Salt Lake Board of Realtors says it’s not a big surprise given the up to $8,000 incentive buyers had a year ago.
“Last year at this time home sales were surging because of the federal homebuyer tax credit. We were seeing double digit increases in sales,” says Anderton. “Now that the tax credit has expired, we captured a lot of those homebuyers late last year. So we are seeing fewer buyers. It was expected that home sales would be down.”
According to the report, just 723 homes sold in October, compared to nearly 1,100 last year.
The report states that home prices remained about the same year-to-year at a median price of nearly $205,000, yet home sales were down 5 percent during the 10-month period from January to October. Anderton says home sales are unlikely to rebound until people go back to work.
“We have to see jobs come back. That is a prerequisite for a robust and strong housing market,” says Anderton. “We are seeing in Utah job growth across the state of about 1.5%. It’s not enough though to really feel it yet. So until we see that number increase to maybe 3% or 4% job growth, we’re not going to feel it.”
According to the report only about 5 percent of all homes sold in October were priced above the half-million dollar mark. There are currently more than 7,600 homes for sale in Salt Lake County.