Real Estate Market

One-in-four sellers slash average $34,000 off home prices

(9/17/2010) - Nationwide, the percentage of homes for sale with price reductions rose to the highest level in 2010, but in 24 of the nation's 50 largest cities that percentage remained the same or dropped.

On the metro level, that's a 50 percent improvement over August, which saw only 16 cities reporting improved or unchanged price reduction data.

Reporting the data, said, nationwide, 26 percent of sellers reduced prices, on average, by 10 percent, or nearly $34,000. That's up from 25 percent of sellers in August who also reduced prices, on average, by 10 percent.

Trulia said the greater number of towns with an unchanged or smaller percentage of price reductions is a modest sign of recovery, but the fire sale continues.

"On the surface, the latest price reduction data carries with it conflicting messages," said Pete Flint, co-founder and CEO, Trulia.

"Nationwide, sellers continue to slash prices and this is a worrisome trend. However, we're seeing gradual improvement in many U.S. cities — several for consecutive months," Flint added.

Trulia's news comes on the heels of news about record low home sales, missing consumer confidence and a lower homeownership rate.

Showing smaller August-to-September percentages of homes with seller price reductions were Dallas and El Paso, TX; Kansas City, KS; Columbus, OH; Arlington, VA; Nashville, TN; Colorado Springs, CO; Detroit, MI; Sacramento, CA and Miami, FL among others.

Cities with the largest percentages of price reductions for September, were Minneapolis, MN at 43 percent; Milwaukee, WI at 40 percent; Phoenix, AZ, 39 percent; Mesa, AZ 37 percent and Albuquerque, NM; Memphis TN and Boston, MA, all at 35 percent.

Cities with the smallest percentages of price reductions for September, were Detroit, 16 percent; Miami, FL, 18 percent; Oakland, CA and El Paso TX, 19 percent and New York, NY and San Jose, CA, both 20 percent.

The towns with the steepest average price cuts for September were Detroit, MI where prices were slashed an average 25 percent; Phoenix, AZ, 14 percent; Cleveland, OH and Las Vegas, NV, both 13 percent; and all at 12 percent Miami and Jacksonville, FL; Los Angeles and Fresno, CA; Baltimore, MD and Mesa, AZ.

The smallest average seller price cut was 6 percent in Louisville, KY and Raleigh, NC. Elsewhere, at the lower end, the average price cut was 7 percent in Boston, MA; Omaha, NB; Arlington and El Paso, TX; Colorado Springs, CO; Nashville, TN and Oklahoma City and Tulsa, OK, Trulia reported.

Said Flint, "We're in for a long climb to bring stability back to the housing market and while it's going to take time, that climb appears to at least be underway in some parts of the country."


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