National home sales rise in March

Home sales nationwide picked up last month.The National Association of Realtors says the sales of existing homes increased in March as more homebuyers began moving last month.According to the monthly report, sales increased 3.7 percent compared to February, moving to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.1 million. While those numbers are down more than 6 percent from 2010, data last year was influenced by the homebuyer tax credit.”Existing-home sales have risen in six of the past eight months, so we're clearly on a recovery path,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. “With rising jobs and excellent affordability conditions, we project moderate improvements into 2012.”Yun added that sales would likely be higher, except many potential buyers are having trouble finding a mortgage, with the average credit score for loans now roughly 760. That's up significantly from 720 just four years ago.In the Houston real estate market, the NAR says both sales and home prices were down slightly from a year ago. The median sales price during the month was $151,500, while sales were down 3.9 percent.Courtesy of 2M Realty News

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