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Harrisburg-area housing market heats up with the weather
The sun is shining on the housing market in Central PA. (ANN FOSTER, The Patriot-News)
Need any more proof that spring is the thing when it comes to home sales across central Pennsylvania?
Look no further than the second-quarter home sale stats for Cumberland, Dauphin and Perry counties, as compiled by the Greater Harrisburg Association of Realtors.
For April through June, the number of residential housing units sold in south central Pennsylvania increased by 12.3 percent. In raw numbers, that is 2,222 units sold during these past three months, up from 1,979 units sold in the second quarter of 2012. All this, according to the Central Penn Multi-List Inc.
As a result, area Realtors are officially declaring a healthy housing rebound in the midstate, as the home sale gains are not only sustained, but they keep gaining strength.
“Home sales in the greater Harrisburg area increased yet again in the second quarter of 2013,” says Michael E. Pion, president of the Greater Harrisburg Association of Realtors. “The increase in the second quarter marks the eighth consecutive quarter of increased home sales in our area.”
Median home sale prices also increased in the second quarter — but not by much — up a scant 0.1 percent from the second quarter of 2012. Basically, this means that prices held steady, overall. The median sale price of residential homes was $163,000 over the past three months, compared to the median cost of $162,900 in the second quarter of 2012.
But Realtors said this steady-as-she-goes sale pricing reflects the area’s more stable housing market. The midstate just didn’t see the booms and busts like the wilder real estate venues of Florida, Arizona and Las Vegas. And that’s a good thing, Realtors say.
“The stability in median home sales price in the region continued in the second quarter.” says Pion. “Over the last several quarters, median sales price has increased modestly, and I believe these increases, coupled with the increases in units sold, reflect a healthy real estate market in the greater Harrisburg area.”
Listings stayed on the market an average of 102 days, a decrease from an average of 114 days in the second quarter of 2012. When this number goes down, it is a good thing. People aren’t just browsing, they are buying.
What is more, there were more homes on the market to choose from, meaning sellers are getting the message and listing their properties. The number of active listings at the end of the second quarter increased to 4,844, compared with 4,476 active listings at the end of the first quarter of 2013.
“The second quarter sales statistics show many positive signs for the greater Harrisburg area real estate market,” says Robert S. Hamilton, broker and owner of RE/MAX Realty Professionals in Harrisburg. “Not only have sales and median price continued to increase, but the average days on market has declined and the number of homes under contract at the end of the second quarter is the second highest all time.”