Massachusetts home sales slide in July for the first time in over a year

Buying News
Waltham, MA - 3/13/2016 - Realtor Jeanette Cummings (R) chats with first time home buyer, Miles Connors, (C) during an open house crowded with other potential buyers in Waltham, MA  March 13, 2016. Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff
Topic: 20firsttime
This year's real estate market was hot in the early spring, usually a slow time. But few available houses have slowed the sales rate since then. Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff

The number of homes sold in Massachusetts dropped in July for the first time in more than a year, according to new numbers from industry watchers.

On Tuesday, the Massachusetts Association of Realtors reported 5,799 sales in July, a 14 percent drop compared to last year.

This is the first time MAR has reported a drop in closed sales in 14 months.

The median price of a single-family home increased slightly to $376,750 in July, a 3.5 percent increase from last year. According to MAR’s figures, median home prices have been up for 15 of the last 16 months.

Meanwhile, condo prices rose to a median price of $360,000, an increase of nearly 6 percent from a year ago.

A separate report from the Warren Group found similar trends for July.

“Buyers finally took a breath for the first times since May 2015,” said MAR president Annie Blatz in a statement. “So much of this year’s activity came early when the market typically is slow. We also know some buyers are getting priced out of the market, and the only way we can fix this is with more inventory.”

Inventory for both single-family homes and condominiums dropped significantly in May. The number of single-family homes available for sale fell to 17,650 in July, a drop of nearly 30 percent from a year ago. There were 2,095 condos for sales in July, a drop of 18 percent from last year.