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According to the Sacramento Association of Realtors, homes sales in 2008 (20,587) almost doubled compared to the previous year (10,620), fueled in part by falling prices (see chart above). Sales in 2008 were also 47% above sales in 2006 (13,970) and were the highest since the peak bubble years of 2005 (21,525 units sold) and 2004 (22,816 units).

The Sacramento home sales rebound continued last month, as sales of 1,542 homes were the most for a January this decade, the Sacramento Association of Realtors reported Friday. Compared to January home sales last year (739), sales increased by 108.7% to 1,542 this year (data here). Thanks to an anonymous CD reader for pointing out that January sales this year were even higher "than the peak bubble years" of 2005 (1,256 January sales) and 2004 (1,234 sales).

As Marketdoc commented on a previous CD post, "Washington better hurry to find a solution to the "toxic asset problem" before market activities correct the problem on their own."

Florida’s existing home sales rose in December, making it the fourth consecutive month that sales activity demonstrated gains in the year-to-year comparison, according to the latest housing data released by the Florida Association of Realtors (FAR). December’s statewide sales also increased over November’s figures in both the existing home and existing condo markets. Existing home sales rose 27% last month with a total of 11,053 homes sold statewide compared to 8,712 homes sold in December 2007, according to FAR (see chart above). December’s statewide existing home sales were 28.9% higher than November’s statewide sales.

Sixteen of Florida’s twenty metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) reported increased existing-home sales in December; 11 MSAs also showed gains in condo sales, marking the sixth month in a row that a number of markets have reported increased sales activity.

Among the state’s large to medium-size markets, the West Palm Beach-Boca Raton MSA reported a total of 638 homes sold in December compared to 467 homes a year ago for a 37% increase.

HT: Marketdoc

Home sales increased 85% in December in California compared with the same period a year ago, while the median price of an existing home fell 41.5%, the California Association of Realtors reported (CAR). Sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California totaled 544,580 in December at a seasonally adjusted annualized rate, according to information collected by CAR from more than 90 local REALTOR associations statewide. Statewide home resale activity increased 85% from the revised 294,520 sales pace recorded in December 2007 (see chart above).

The median price of an existing, single-family detached home in California during December 2008 was $281,100, a 41.5% decrease from the revised $480,820 median for December 2007, CAR reported (see chart above).

From what you hear in the media, it would seem like we are years away from a real estate recovery, when the statistical data suggest otherwise. Falling home prices and falling mortgage rates are fueling a real estate recovery in states like California and Florida. In other words, markets are working. As the Law of Demand predicts, demand curves slope downward, and when home prices fall, the number of homes sold increases.
Source: Supply and Demand: Housing Sales Increase in California and Florida