Let’s Ask the Magic Eight Ball to Interpret Minneapolis Duplex Sales


Are we at the bottom of the market? We could look at MAAR‘s weekly activity report this morning for hints. Then again, these numbers are confusing. We might have more fun asking the Magic Eight Ball and getting the side of the floating triangle that says, “Who Knows?”

According to MAAR, the trend of pending sales being significantly above those from the same time a year ago continued.  In fact, sales were up a whopping 19.1 percent.

Of course, the tendency toward lender-mediated sales remains equally robust. Of the properties that received purchase agreements, 53.5 percent involved a bank at some level. What’s more, 41.9 percent were in the lower tier of pricing; being listed at $150,000 or below; usually first time home buyer territory.

The number of single family homes new to the market continued its downward trend, with new listings being 9.0 percent below last year’s mark.

This was not the case in the small multi-family home sector, however. New listings were up a staggering 265 percent. The silver lining in this news, however, is that while last year’s new listings were 80 percent lender mediated, the number of bank-involved properties during the same week this year dropped to 75 percent.

On the pending sales side of the duplex market, the surge continued. Forty-eight properties received purchase agreements; up 369 percent over the same week last year. Of these, 85 percent were lender mediated. Last year, all of the pended properties included a bank in the negotiations.

While the average sale price of the pended homes dropped from last week’s mark, so too did the figures for 2007.  The 2007 figure reflected an average sale price for duplexes of $130,270. This year’s mark was $105,560.

This week’s figures certainly send mixed messages. However, there does appear to be a leveling off of the number of short sale and foreclosure properties.