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Phoenix area home sales decline in March

Home sales in the greater Phoenix area fell 2.7% year-over-year in March, real estate data firm DataQuick said Friday.

The research firm attributed the dip in sales year-over-year to a shorter supply of foreclosures in the under $100,000-price range. The firm reported 10,005 new and resale home closings in March, up 22.2% from February, but still lower than a year ago.

DataQuick said it's normal for the number of sales to tick up rapidly between the months of February and March as buyers and sellers move into the warm weather months.

The median price paid on a Phoenix-area home or condo hit $135,900 in March, its highest level since June 2010.

While the number of home sales in the sub-$100,000 segment fell 26.2% in March, sales rose year-over-year in most other home categories.

In the $100,000-to-$200,000 price range sales increased 15.3%. Meanwhile, deals in the $200,000-to-$600,000 range increased 14.9% from a year ago. In addition, luxury sales in the $500,000-plus category increased 5.4%.

Foreclosure re-sales, or sales on homes that have been foreclosed on in the past year, declined to a point where they now represent 31.8% of all March resales, the lowest level in four years. Short-sales represented 13.3% of all March resale activity.

DataQuick found 2,387 Phoenix-area foreclosures in March, down 6.9% from the previous month and 60.2% from a year earlier.

Investors and vacation-home buyers acquired 46.1% of all Phoenix-area homes sold in March.


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