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Friday, March 1, 2013

Pending Home Sales Near Three-year High

More homebuyers signed contracts to buy last month than any time since April 2010, according to the National Association of Realtors. And, not counting tax credit-induced spikes, pending home sales last month were the highest in six years.

Pending sales of existing homes, or contracts signed but sales not yet closed, rose 4.5 percent from December and were up 9.5 percent from a year ago.

"Favorable market conditions and job growth have unleashed a pent-up demand," said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. "Most areas are drawing down housing inventory, which has shifted the supply/demand balance to sellers in much of the country."

The Washington-based association has also revised higher its expectations for price gains this year, to 7 percent or more, from its previous forecast of home values rising as much as 6 percent.

Pending home sales rose in all regions of the country, led by the Midwest, where contract activity was up nearly 18 percent from a year ago.

Data courtesy of Jeff Clabaugh, Washington Business Journal.

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