Phoenix home sales fall 13.2% in July
July home sales in the Phoenix area plummeted 13.2% from June, but remain 19% above year-ago levels when the homebuyer tax credit expired leaving the market without federally backed incentives, DataQuick said Tuesday. In July, 9,050 new and resale homes and condos were closed in Phoenix. The research data firm's market outlook covers home sales in Maricopa County, which includes Phoenix and is the fourth most populous county in the country, and Pinal County in the central part of Arizona. Greater Phoenix area home prices fell last month, as well, as more buyers opted for homes priced at less than $100,000, including distressed and discounted properties. Distressed properties accounted for nearly two-thirds of the resale market in July. A drop in sales in July is common, according to DataQuick. However, this year's "larger-than-usual drop" is likely the "result of more potential homebuyers getting nervous about the worsening economic news." When breaking the data down by home type, sales on single-family detached houses and condos rose 20.6% from a year ago and increased 8.7% from June. The number of homes selling below $100,000 jumped 43.2% over a year ago, according to DataQuick. The median home price in Phoenix hit $120,000 last month, down 54.6% from the peak of $264,100 in June 2006. In the last seven months, the median market value has fluctuated between $119,000 and $122,900. Write to: Kerri Panchuk.