South leads nation in rise of median prices for homes

Real Estate Watch

November 23, 1997

The South continues to be the hot spot for home appreciation as the National Association of Realtors reported that the median price for homes sales was up in the third quarter over the same period last year.

Nationally, the median existing-home price for the third quarter was $126,500, a 5 percent higher than in the third quarter of 1996. Of the 131 areas surveyed, 122 metropolitan areas had an increase and nine areas had double-digit increases.

Among the leaders was New Orleans and the Fort Lauderdale, Fla., area, which rose 11.3 percent over the third quarter in 1996. The median home price was $96,600 in New Orleans and $125,500 in Fort Lauderdale.

The Baltimore metropolitan area's median price was $120,800, 4.7 percent higher than the $115,400 in last year's third quarter.

Regionally, the South posted the biggest gain in median home prices during the third quarter. Home prices in that region had a median of $112,300, a gain of 6.9 percent.

The Midwest had a 5.5 percent increase over last year's figure, to $108,100.

In the West, only San Francisco had a double-digit increase. The median price of its homes rose 10.1 percent from 1996 to $300,600.

The West, overall, had a median home price of $163,000, a 5.2 percent increase.

Only the Northeast failed to exceed the nation's 5 percent median increase for the third quarter. The median price for a home in the Northeast was $147,400, which was up 3.4 percent over the same time period last year.

Pub Date: 11/23/97

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