Local Realtors are increasingly positive about both rising home sales and price increases, according to recent survey results from the Massachusetts Association of Realtors (MAR) members.
The Realtors Price Index (RPI) hit an all-time high in March, while the Realtor Market Index (RMI) hit its second highest point since both data have been tracked. Despite their optimism, Realtors reported the majority of their buyer clients are mildly concerned about job loss in the current economy.
"It has been awhile since Realtors felt this positive about the market and their confidence is encouraging," said 2012 MAR President Trisha McCarthy, broker at Keller Williams Realty in Newburyport. "As long the market conditions remain where they are in terms of relatively lower prices and interest rates, activity should continue to be positive for at least the remainder of the spring buying season."
In March 2012, the Realtor Market Index rose 54 percent to 49.54, up from 32.09 in March 2011. Measured on a 100-point scale, a score of 50 is the midpoint between a "strong" (100 points) and "weak" (0 points) market condition. The March index is the second highest point since the index has been tracked and the highest point without the presence of the homebuyer tax credit. On a month-to-month basis, the March RMI was up 25.5 percent from the 39.47 score in February 2012.
The Realtor Price Index was 57.73 in March, which was up 18.6 from the March 2011 RPI of 48.69. This is the highest point reached on the RPI scale since the data has been tracked. On a month-to-month basis, the RPI was up 5.4 percent from the February 2012 RPI of 54.78
Realtor members were asked in March whether their buyer and seller clients were concerned about job loss. Sixty-one percent responded that they were mildly concerned about job loss. Nine percent had no concern, while 30 percent indicated that their buyer and seller clients had significant concern.
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