Baton Rouge-area home sales top 2014’s total despite drop-off for November _lowres

 

The number of houses sold this year in metro Baton Rouge already has topped 2014’s total despite a 4.3 percent drop-off in November sales from a year ago.

Through the first 11 months of 2015, there were 8,940 home sales in the nine-parish metro area, exceeding 2014’s total of 8,903 by 0.4 percent with one month still to go.

For the 11-month period, sales are up 8.3 percent from November 2014, according to figures released Friday by the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors’ Multiple Listing Service.

The monthly sales decline in November for the metro area overshadowed a nearly 20 percent sales increase in Livingston Parish.

There were 608 homes sold in November in the nine-parish area. That compares with 635 MLS sales in November 2014. The downturn snapped a five-month streak of sales going up year to year.

Officials with the Realtors’ association blamed the November sales drop on a limited inventory of houses for sale.

Ascension Parish had the biggest decrease in sales, falling 8.5 percent from 141 MLS sales in November 2014 to 129. At the same time, the inventory of homes for sale in the parish dropped by 14.4 percent, meaning the supply of houses at the current rate of sales is 2.8 months. Six months is generally considered to be an ample supply.

In the metro area, the supply of homes fell by 22.2 percent to 4.2 months. That compares with a 5.4-month supply in November 2014.

East Baton Rouge Parish, which makes up the largest share of MLS sales, had a 2.5 percent decrease in activity during November. There were 312 MLS sales last month, compared with 320 in November 2014.

Livingston Parish had 121 MLS sales, a 19.8 percent increase over the 101 sales in November 2014.

The median home sales price in the metro area rose by 0.5 percent in November to $185,000 from $184,100 — meaning half the houses sold for more and half for less than that price.

The number of pending sales in metro Baton Rouge, a sign of future activity, increased by 4.6 percent from 612 to 640.

The number of homes for sale dropped by 14.6 percent from 4,080 in November 2014 to 3,486. New listings were down by 7.5 percent to 765 in November, compared with 827 a year earlier.

The number of days a house stayed on the market dropped from 79 to 72 in metro Baton Rouge.

Follow Timothy Boone on Twitter, @TCB_TheAdvocate.