Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, Iowa Home Sales Rise in October

By George Ford, Reporter

FILE PHOTO - A for sale by owner sign sits on the corner of an intersection in Des Moines, Iowa.(AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)


By Aaron Hepker

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - More homes were sold last month in Cedar Rapids, Iowa City and the state of Iowa than in October 2011 as attractive mortgage rates continued to propel a recovering housing market.

The Cedar Rapids Area Association of Realtors reported 362 homes sold in October, up 28.4 percent from 282 in October 2011. The average sale price increased 7 percent to $166,743 last month from $155,769 in October 2011.

In the Iowa City-Coralville-North Liberty area, 179 homes sold in October, up 14 percent from 157 in the same month last year, according to the Iowa City Area Association of Realtors. The average sale price rose 42.6 percent to $191,894 in October from $170,627 in the same month last year.

Statewide, 2,998 homes were sold in October, up 13.3 percent from 2,646 homes sold in October 2011, according to the Iowa Association of Realtors. Thirty of the 44 local Realtor boards across Iowa reported increases in home sales.

The median sale price was $126,500 in October, up 5.4 percent from $120,000 in October 2011. Twenty-eight local Realtor boards posted increases in median sale price.

Pending sales were up by 11.9 percent. There were 2,850 pending sales in October, up from 2,546 pending sales last October.

The inventory of homes on the market continued to decline. There were 20,303 homes on the market at the end of October, down 11.1 percent from 22,835 homes on the market at the end of October 2011.

Days on the market also continued to drop by 5.9 percent. The average number of days on the market in October was 96 days, down from 102 days in October 2011 . Thirty-one local boards posted decreases in days on the market.

Don Marple, president of the Iowa Association of Realtors, said October's figures reflected a rebound from a slight slowdown in September.

"Sales, pending sales, and median sales price were all up in the third quarter," Marple said. "It appears as if the fourth quarter is off to a strong start as well. At this rate, we are on track to end the year ahead of 2011."

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