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  • Writer's pictureCathy Hertler

March Pending Home Sales Bounce Back After Snowy February

Most Sales Under Agreement in March Since 2005

WALTHAM, Mass. – April 9, 2013 – The Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® (MAR) reported today that March pending home sales were positive for the 22nd time out of the past 23 months compared to the year before. Condominium pending sales were also up.  Pending sales figures (also called homes under agreement) are a leading indicator of actual housing sales in Massachusetts for the following 2-3 months.

“A lack of inventory continues, but buyers pushed pending sale activity forward in March,” said 2013 MAR President Kimberly Allard-Moccia, broker-owner of Century 21 Professionals in Braintree. “Several weekend storms kept a good percentage of buyers inside in February, so it was encouraging to see activity pick back up in March.”

The number of single-family homes put under agreement in March was up 4.6 percent compared to the same time last year (4,118 homes in 2012 to 4,308 homes in 2013). This is the 22 nd time out of the past 23 months that there have been year-over-year increases. You have to go back to 2005 to find a March that had more homes go under agreement than March 2013 (4,404 homes in 2005). On a month-to-month basis, single-family homes put under agreement were up 46 percent compared to 2,960 homes put under agreement in February 2013. It is typical to see a significant February-to-March increase in the number of single-family homes put under agreement.

The number of condos put under agreement in March was up 9.4 percent compared to March 2012 (1,725 units in 2012 to 1,888 units in 2013). This is the 23rd straight month of year-over-year increases. On a month-to-month basis, condos put under agreement went UP 48 percent from 1,279 units in February 2013. It is also typical to see a significant February-to-March increase in the number of condominiums put under agreement.

About Pending Sales: The tracking of signed purchase and sales agreements (also called “pending sales”) provide reliable information about where the real estate market is heading in coming months. 

A pending sale or a sale “under agreement” is when the buyer and seller agree on the terms of the sale of a home and have a signed purchase and sale agreement, but have yet to close and be recorded as such.  MAR is the only organization which compiles this statewide information from Multiple Listing Services each month.

The Data: Monthly pending (or under agreement) data and closed sales data comes from the three REALTOR®-affiliated Multiple Listing Services in Massachusetts. They are the Berkshire County Multiple Listing Service, Cape Cod & Islands Association of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service, Inc.; and MLS Property Information Network, Inc. The data is compiled by 10K Research and Marketing, Inc. and updated each month. As a result, previous data may change after the reports have been run.

About the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS®: Organized in 1924, the Massachusetts Association of REALTORS® is a professional trade organization with more than 18,000 members.  The term REALTOR® is registered as the exclusive designation of members of the National Association of REALTORS® who subscribe to a strict code of ethics and enjoy continuing education programs.

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