Duplex Sales No Day At The Park

colorful playgroundIf home sales were a slide in the park, this would be fun.

With today’s release of the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, we climbed the ladder of hope on the news that Twin Cities home prices were up 6.5 percent in March over the same month one year ago.

Looking forward to a quick trip down the slide, however, today’s Weekly Market Activity Report released by the Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors (MAR), resulted in our skin sticking to the slide.

MAR reported that for the week ending May 15, there were 830 purchase agreements signed. While that sounds like a lot, it is disappointing when compared to the 1,469 that were signed during the final week of the tax credits.

Worse yet, this is a 32.8 percent decline in transactions from the same week a year ago.

On the duplex playground, however, there was a little more fun to be had.

Exactly the same number of duplexes received purchase agreements during the second full weeks of May in 2009 and 2010. While the 32 pended for the week isn’t exactly an inspirational number, it is just three transactions shy of the number pended the final week of the tax credit.

Of the small multi-family properties that received purchase agreements, 31.25 percent were offered by traditional sellers. This represents a 6.25 percent year over year increase in market share.

New listings for the week fell dramatically were down a dizzying 27.3 percent from last year. Of those, 43.75 percent were being offered by traditional sellers; a market share increase of 4.36 percent.

Recent weeks and months haven’t seen the dramatic swings in the duplex market we saw during winter. However, this very lack of drama may in fact suggest we’re bumping along the bottom of the multi-family market.