Area home sales increase in 2014 _lowres


Home sales in metro Baton Rouge dropped by 4 percent in April because of a slight decline in activity in East Baton Rouge Parish and Ascension, where inventory is tight.

There were 776 home sales that closed in April in the nine-parish area, according to figures released Friday by the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors’ Multiple Listing Service. That compares with 808 closed sales in April 2014.

In East Baton Rouge, which accounts for the biggest share of the market, sales were down by 4.9 percent. There were 409 houses sold in April, compared with 430 sales the year before.

Ascension, which has been hampered by a tight inventory of homes, had an even bigger percentage drop. Sales were down 10.7 percent over April 2014 totals. There were 133 homes sold in the parish, compared with 149 sales the year before.

Livingston Parish saw a 6 percent gain in sales from April 2014. There were 159 sales in the parish during April, up from 150 the year before.

Despite the drop in sales, the fundamentals of the metro area home market remained strong.

The areawide median sales price for a home rose 12 percent in April to $192,000 from $171,443.

The average number of days a home was on the market was down by 10.9 percent, from 92 days in April 2014 to 82 days.

The number of homes for sale fell 16.2 percent, from 4,223 to 3,537. The supply in months was 4.4, compared with 5.9 in 2014. A six-month supply is considered normal.

The number of new listings on the market was down 13.5 percent, from 1,280 in 2014 to 1,107.

Through the first four months of the year, there were 2,730 home sales in the metro area, compared with 2,596 through April 2014, a 5.2 percent increase.

Sales were up 13.4 percent in Livingston for the first four months of the year, going from 461 to 523.

East Baton Rouge saw a 6.3 percent increase through the same period, coming in at 1,439 closed sales compared with 1,354 in 2014.

Ascension sales were practically unchanged through the first four months of the year, going from 512 in 2014 to 511 this year.

Follow Timothy Boone on Twitter, @TCB_TheAdvocate.