MLS data show increase in Vermont home sales in Q1 2012
According to analysis of the MLS (Multiple Listing Service), real estate sales in Vermont increased by slightly over 10 percent in the first quarter of 2012. Compared to last year, MLS data for 2012 shows 955 sales while the first quarter of 2011 saw total sales of 867. This increase can be attributed to increased buyer confidence that the housing market is starting to return to equilibrium after 2008’s “Great Recession.”
“While we still aren’t seeing the same level of confidence that we did in 2006 or 2007, it is greater now than at any point during the prior four years,” said Rob Foley, owner of Flat Fee Real Estate in Burlington. MLS data shows that Chittenden County experienced an increase from 224 sales in the first quarter of 2011 to 243 sales in the first quarter of 2012, and the median home price increased by $1,000.
While experts warn that the national housing market could suffer another blow from the ‘shadow market’ of foreclosures (proceedings that banks have been delaying until the robo-signing litigation is completed), Foley believes that the Vermont market will be largely unaffected, and will continue its recovery. “The Vermont market is more stable, and in better health, than national markets. Our state sees less speculative housing activity, lending practices are more conservative, and inventory tends to track carefully to primary home ownership demand, all of which lead me to expect a continued recovery of Vermont home prices.”