Home sales rising from the ashes

by Adam Smith18 Mar 2013


Last year was a bleak one for the property market, but sales "rose from the ashes" in the latter half of the year.
RP Data has revealed that 2012 saw annual sales increasing at their lowest levels since 1996. The year experienced sales volumes 13.7% below the five-year average. But analyst Cameron Kusher said transactions were 7.6% higher over the latter six months of 2012 compared to the first.
"The improvement in transaction activity occured in concert with an increase in home values over the second half of the year," Kusher said.
Kusher said the uptick in sales activity reflected the "delayed impact" of rate cuts.
"It also reflects improving consumer sentiment throughout late 2012," he said.
But Kusher said housing sales had a long way to go before returning to normal levels.
"This trend will need to continue throughout 2013 before the total number of home sales returns to the long-term average level. A stable interest rate environment and a sustainable improvement in consumer sentiment would increase the likelihood of further increases in buyer demand throughout 2013," he said.