Home-buying activity on the rise in metro Rochester - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Home-buying activity on the rise in metro Rochester

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ROCHESTER (KTTC) -- Home-buying activity appears to be on the rise in metro Rochester, with a jump of "Pending" sales listings in January compared to a year earlier.

The SouthEast Minnesota Association of Realtors reports that there were 106 "Pending" sales agreements entered in January, 30.9 percent higher than January, 2010.  There were also 49 "Sold" listings.  There were actually eight fewer homes sold this January than last, but when the two categories are combined, home-buying activity for the month is 12.3 percent higher than a year ago.

"There were mixed signals in all five markets of this region," said Duane Sauke, SEMAR MLS President.  "Three of the five major hubs in SE MN showed a decided increase in the number of contracts agreed to.  This shows an increase in buyer activity in comparison to January of last year."

However, though there seems to be more buyer activity, there are fewer homes on the market.  Sauke notes that the number of homes now for sale in Rochester has dropped from a year ago.  There are currently 990 homes on the market as active listings, which is down six percent from a year ago, when there were 1,053 homes on the market at the end of January.

SEMAR statistics show that the median sales price of the homes that sold in January was $153,375.  That's up three percent from last January, when it was $149,000.  SEMAR says the numbers come from a year-over-year comparison from August 1, 2010, to January 31, 2011 from the City of Rochester.

"There is hope that foreclosures will diminish during the middle of 2011," said Sauke, in a statement to reporters.  "Long term trends are still very dependent on real job growth and consumer confidence."

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