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Champaign Area Closes 2012 with Home Sale Gains

December Sales Marks Eleven Continuous Months of Home Sale Increases; Commercial Real Estate Market Shows Solid Improvement

Champaign, IL: Residential home sales activity continued on an upward trend in December, rising for the eleventh consecutive month in the Champaign area, according to the Champaign County Association of REALTORS® (CCAR).

According to CCAR, 2,383 home sales (including single family home sales and condominiums) were sold in the Champaign County area in 2012, up 21 percent from 1,967 homes sold in 2011. The total dollar volume of sales for 2012 was $379,795,238 up 26.83 percent from $299,442.085 in sales in 2011. For the month of December, 149 homes were sold up 5.67 percent increase from 141 sales in December of 2011.

According to CCAR, the median home sale price year-to-date was $140,000 up 2.94 percent from $136,000 a year ago. The median sales price for the month of December was $134,500, up 4.26 percent from the same period a year ago. New construction home sales in 2012 outpaced last year's rate by 47 percent with 153 sales as compared to 110 in 2011.

There were 136 pending sales at the end of December, a 29.5 percent increase from 105 from December in 2011. Pending sales for the month of December reflect the total number of active listings that went under contract and are awaiting closing usually 30 to 60 days in the future.

"Buyers' confidence in the market continued to pick up steam as the year progressed along with renewed optimism about increasing home values and investment in real estate," said Todd Salen, president of the Champaign County Association of REALTORS®.

The average rate on a fixed rate mortgage for the North Central Region, according to the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), was 3.32 percent in the month of December of 2012, down from 3.94 percent in December 2011.

The West Region which includes Mahomet saw sales uptick 14 percent in December from the same period a year ago and 27 percent for the entire year of 2012. Champaign and Savoy sales were up 32 percent in December and 30 percent for the year. Urbana sales were up 12 percent for 2012.

"Housing forecasts for the new year are bright as we begin to see new growth in household formation and pent-up demand on behalf of renters who have been biding their time waiting for a sustained recovery. Buyers may have more of a sense of urgency to buy in 2013 due to falling inventories and before home prices or interest rates rise too much. They may find more competition in the market. Continued favorable job market conditions in the Champaign area presents buyers with greater optimism about improving economic and market conditions and offer a much needed boost to both the residential and commercial real estate sectors," said Salen, a broker with Sperry Van Ness/Ramshaw Real Estate of Champaign.

The commercial real estate market is showing continued signs of stabilization in the Champaign County area as reported by the Champaign County Association of REALTORS® and expectations are that 2013 will continue to provide solid gains.

Fundamentals are improving in major sectors of the commercial real estate market with vacancy rates declining and momentum building due in large part to improving economic and employment factors which are driving all major commercial sectors locally.

Commercial REALTORS®, members of the Champaign County Association of REALTORS®, expect to see strong growth especially in the multi-family and the office sectors in 2013.

"You can’t drive down the streets in Champaign County and not notice the 'For Sale' and 'For Lease' signs coming down. Business owners are starting to see a significant pick-up in business and it shows in the reduction of vacant store fronts and offices,” said Salen.

According to Champaign County Association of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Statistics, there were 51 leased commercial/industrial properties in 2012 in Champaign County and surrounding areas versus 23 in 2011 and there were a total of 41 commercial/industrial and income/multi-family sales in 2012 versus 
29 in 2011.

The National Association of REALTORS® expects modestly improving commercial market fundamentals nationwide. NAR expects vacancy rates in all four commercial sectors including office, industrial, retail and multi-family to show gradual improvements over the next four quarter in 2013.

The Champaign County Association of REALTORS® is a voluntary trade organization serving Champaign County and surrounding areas, and is the leading resource for REALTOR® members and an advocate for homeownership and private property rights. Statistics were compiled from local regions of the Champaign County Association of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service which covers Champaign County and surrounding areas.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013/Categories: News Releases