Real estate market points to improving economy
by Lonnie Adamson Editor/General Manager
PICKENS – A surge in home sales in Pickens and Anderson counties bodes well for the regions economy according to an Anderson real estate specialist.
Peggy Hill owns Western UpState Realtors, an organization for 1,400 Realtor members in the UpState. She also manages a Multiple Listing Service in the area.
Key to her remarks to the Pickens Rotary Club last week was the statistic that year-to-date residential closings were up 14 percent in Pickens County comparing 2012 to 2013.
Numerically that is an increase of 45 closings
Median sale price was also up 12 percent, going from $120,000 in 2012 to $135,000 in to 2013, Hill said.
She pointed out that the marker on the economy is significant because of the tendency in the past for home building to serve as an indicator of overall growth.
Economy watchers point to the many ways that a home sale affects the local economy. Nearly 40 percent of people who move will make major investments in improvements to their homes, ranging from paint to home additions, renovations and landscaping.
Continued lower mortgage interest rates have helped sustain the sale of homes, Hill said. The rates are climbing some now but remain considerably lower than in years past.
A decline in home prices in the last five years was driven in part by the rising number of foreclosures. Foreclosures and short sales are declining in number as is the average number of days on the market.
That number is down 18 percent for the period year-to-date 2012-2013.
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