The real estate market in metropolitan Baltimore held steady during the first half of 1990, with the total number of real estate sales dropping by only 1 percent from the number of sales in the first half of 1989, according to Rufus S. Lusk & Son Inc., a regional real estate information service.
For the first half of 1990, according to the Lusk report, the number of single-family residences sold was 19,395 as opposed to a figure of 19,551 for sales in the first half of 1989. The total number of condominium sales rose 16 percent, from 2,534 sales in the first half of 1989 to 2,936 during the first half of 1990.
Median sales prices for the metropolitan Baltimore area rose for both single-family houses and condominiums from the first half of 1989 to the first half of 1990, according to the Lusk report.
The median price for a single-family home sold in the first half of 1990 was $121,838, three percent more than the median price of $117,905 for a single-family home sold in the first half of 1989, the report said. The median price for a condominium sold in the first half of 1990 was $91,165, up 8 percent from the figure of $84,042 for a condominium sold in the same period one year before.
"The typical property may be on the market somewhat longer, and the typical real estate transaction may be requiring a lot more effort to get to settlement, but the good news is that the market held steady for the first half of 1990, despite a barrage of pessimistic reports," said company president Rufus S. Lusk III. "This is strong evidence of a continuing strength in the overall Baltimore metropolitan area economy and prospects for the future."
Harford County was the sales leader in the first half of 1990, with a 12 percent increase in the number of transactions and a seven percent median price increase as compared to the same period one year before, according to the Lusk report.
Howard County continued to be the most expensive area with a median sale price of almost $190,000, a nine percent increase over the median price for Howard County in the first half of 1989. By contrast, the median sale price in Baltimore was $55,000.
The Lusk report includes sales of new and previously owned houses and condominiums in Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Carroll, Harford and Howard counties. It does not include gifts, intrafamily sales or other transactions that Lusk does not consider "arm's-length, market sales."
An 11-member design team headed by Jay Graham of Graham Landscape Architects in Annapolis won first place and $5,000 in a recent design competition held to "put the charm back" into the Calvert County town of Prince Frederick.
Second place went to a team led by I. Guyman Martin of Martin Associates in Washington. Third place went to a team headed by Seth Harry Price and Price Architects of Tacoma Park. Honorable mentions went to Gregory Ault and a five-member team from Baltimore; David Blaha of John E. Harms and Associates and five others from Pasadena; David Powell of Washington, Robert Pushar of Chesapeake Beach; and Thomas Reinecker and five others from Prince Frederick.
Twenty different design teams entered the competition, which was co-sponsored by the Calvert County Historical Society, the Maryland Historical Trust and the Chesapeake Bay chapter of JTC the American Institute of Architects.
Around the region:
* The Shelter/Can American Group of Baltimore has selected Harkins Builders to be the general contractor for the Maiden Choice Terrace Apartments, a 101-unit, three-story apartment complex for the elderly it is building in Catonsville. Winsor-Faricy Architects Inc. of St. Paul, Minn., is the architect for the project, which is scheduled for completion in July 1991.
* Paul C. Brophy, president of the Enterprise Foundation, will be the main speaker in the third in a series of lectures entitled "The Neighborhood and The City." The lecture series is made possible through donations made to the Carl N. Ruskin Memorial Lectureship Fund. Mr. Brophy's talk, which is free and open to the public, will be presented on November 7 at 8 p.m. at the Baltimore campus of the University of Maryland. The title of his lecture will be "The New Wave in Our Neighborhoods: New Opportunities for Partnership." A fund-raising dinner for the lectureship fund will be held at the University Club, Redwood and Eutaw streets, on the day of the lecture starting at 6:30 p.m. The price is $35 per person. More information is available at 783-2830.
* Site Management Inc., a Washington-based development firm, purchased Falls Center, an 8,300-square-foot retail complex at 4535 Falls Road in Baltimore, from Baltimore businessman Herbert Davis for $1.3 million. Patrick Miller and Larry Mekulski of Kayne Levin Neilson Bavar Realtors represented the buyer and seller.
* David C. Noel and Dennis J. Lane have formed Noel-Lane Commercial Real Estate Services. The new firm, located in the Columbia Business Center on Dobbin Road in Columbia, will specialize in tenant representation for office and industrial real estate in the Baltimore-Washington corridor. Mr. Noel was formerly director of sales and marketing for Diversified Housing Corp. and has been active in real estate in Baltimore, Anne Arundel and Howard counties and Baltimore City for more than 15 years. Mr. Lane was formerly vice president of leasing and marketing for Crystal Hill Investments in Columbia.