Baton Rouge-area home sales were 10.1 percent lower in October than the year before because of a large sales drop in East Baton Rouge Parish.

There were 786 homes sold in metro Baton Rouge during October, according to figures released Monday by the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors' Multiple Listing Service. That compares with 874 Multiple Listing Service sales in the nine-parish region during October 2017. This was the eighth time this year there was a year-to-year drop in the number of houses sold.

Through the first 10 months of the year, home sales are down by 4.9 percent to 9,110 from 9,580.

In East Baton Rouge Parish, which accounts for the largest segment of the local housing market, there was a 19.2 percent drop in MLS sales for October to 378 sales from 468 a year ago. Ascension Parish had a slight 1.9 percent drop in sales to 152 from 155.

Livingston Parish, which has long been a haven for first-time buyers, had a 16.7 percent increase in MLS sales to 182 from 156 a year ago.

Along with the drop in sales, home prices fell modestly. The median sale price for a home in metro Baton Rouge was $197,500, a 0.5 percent decrease from the $198,500 in October 2017. That means half the homes sold for below that price, half for above that price. The average sale price dropped by 2.6 percent to $221,336 from $227,265. The average sale price can be affected by luxury home sales.

Pending sales, an indicator of future activity, dropped 7.5 percent in October to 797 from 862. New listings were up 8.2 percent to 1,234 from 1,141.

There were 4,334 homes for sale in metro Baton Rouge during October, a 16 percent increase from the year before. The supply increased from 4 months to 4.9 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 from 56 to 66.

Through the first 10 months of the year, Ascension Parish narrowly topped sales from the year before, at 1,666 compared with 1,659 MLS sales. Sales were down 4.6 percent in Livingston Parish to 1,711 from 1,793, while East Baton Rouge sales were down 7.3 percent to 4.845 from 5,225.

Follow Timothy Boone on Twitter, @TCB_TheAdvocate.