Home Sales

Associated Press file photo of a sold home. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)

Baton Rouge-area home sales rose 2.8% in April compared to 2018, the second time this year there has been a year-to-year increase in sales.

There were 981 homes sold in metro Baton Rouge during April, according to figures released Wednesday by the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors' Multiple Listing Service. That compares with 954 Multiple Listing Service sales in the nine-parish region during April 2018. There was a year-to-year increase in February.

The gains weren't enough to offset a slower start to 2018. For the first four months of the year, the number of homes sold in metro Baton Rouge was down 2.3%. There were 3,188 MLS sales as of the end of April, compared with 3,264. Sales were up 2.2% for the first quarter in Ascension to 613 from 600. Livingston had a 2% sales decrease to 600 from 612, while East Baton Rouge was down 4.3% to 1,661 from 1,735.

A jump in sales in Ascension Parish helped power April's year-to-year increase. There were 188 MLS sales in April, a 7.4% jump over the 175 sales the year before. Livingston Parish had a 1.8% increase in home sales during April to 173 from 170. East Baton Rouge Parish, which accounts for the largest share of home sales in the market, had a modest increase in sales to 514 from 513.

The median sale price for a home in metro Baton Rouge was $200,000, up 0.5% from the year before. That means half the homes sold for below that price, half for above that price. The average sale price rose by 3.1% to $229,507 from $222,502. The average sale price can be affected by luxury home sales.

Pending sales, an indicator of future activity, rose by 7.7% in April to 1,114 from 1,034. New listings were unchanged from the year before, holding at 1,469.

There were 4,287 homes for sale in metro Baton Rouge during April, a 7% increase from the year before. The supply increased from 4.4 months to 4.8 months. Six months is considered a healthy supply of homes. The number of days a house was on the market before it sold was up to 78 from 64.

Follow Timothy Boone on Twitter, @TCB_TheAdvocate.