Single-family house sales down in Nov. Decline from last year is 25%

prices steady

February 10, 1991|By Edward Gunts

Single-family house sales transactions in the Baltimore area dropped 25 percent in November 1990 compared with sales in November of 1989, but prices remained relatively steady, according to a new study by Rufus S. Lusk & Son Inc.

The study showed that single-family house sales fell from 3,408 in November of 1989 to 2,571 in November 1990. Condominium sales dropped 12 percent during the same period, from 412 in November of 1989 to 361 in November of 1990.

For the first 11 months of 1990, the total number of single-family house sales dropped three percent from the same period the year before, from 35,727 in the first 11 months of 1989 to 34,546 in the first 11 months of 1990, according to the Lusk study.

The total number of condominium sales rose four percent during the same period, from 4,712 sales during the first 11 months of 1989 to 4,890 sales during the first 11 months of 1990.

From January to November of 1990, the median sale price for single-family houses was $125,500, down slightly from the median sale price of $125,750 during the first 11 months of 1989. The median sale price for condominiums sold during the first 11 months of 1990 was $93,550, down one percent from the comparable figure of $94,800 for 1989.

The median sale price for single-family houses in November 1990 was $109,300, down 1 percent from the figure of $110,900 for November 1989. The median sale price for condominiums sold in November was $92,800, down three percent from the November 1989 figure of $96,100.

"These statistics for November 1990 settlements reflect the first month following the Kuwait invasion -- that is, contracts that were written in August and September of 1990.

"As consumer confidence retreated marketedly following the jTC invasion, real estate was affected, like every other part of the economy," said Rufus S. Lusk III, company president.

"We continue to be in a market that is going through a major readjustment," Mr. Lusk said. Still, "it is very important to emphasize that we do have a healthy volume of sales activity throughout the Metropolitan Baltimore area -- just not the frenetic pace of the last few years, which everyone had begun to take for normalcy.

"Properties that are properly priced are selling in reasonable periods of time and at significant profits to owners who have held them for some time," he said. "All of this is making for a stronger, healthier market in the long run."

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