Texas home sales fall below ’09 levels

Home sales in Texas last year were below 2009 levels.Data from the Texas Association of Realtors (http://www NULL.texasrealtors NULL.com/public/MR/About/Media/News/NR2011-02-01 NULL.cfm) finds that the number of homes sold in the state last year was down from 2009.

The Texas Quarterly Housing Report finds that there were just under 203,000 homes sold in the state last year, down roughly 5 percent from the previous year. However, much as has been the case in the Houston real estate market, prices remained strong, gaining 1 percent over the same time period.

"It's clear Texas was not immune to the economic downturn in 2010 and that showed in the number of homes sold. However, it's encouraging to see that Texas real estate held its value so well during the year, which bodes well for homeowners as the recovery continues," said Dwight Hale, 2011 chairman of the Texas Association of Realtors.

The largest reason for the drop was the data from the fourth quarter of last year, which fell 18.9 percent below 2009 levels. However, analysts said the homebuyer tax credit skewed those results, increasing sales at the end of 2009, and pulling forward others into the first half of 2010.

Overall, the prices for Houston homes have remained higher than the state as a whole. According to the Houston Association of Realtors, the median home price in December was $157,500, roughly 7 percent above the $147,400 state-wide median price last year.

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