November 9, 2007

Top End Housing Market in Nashville Area is still Growing

Top end of housing market weathers subprime
$400K-plus home sales remain strong
Nashville Business Journal - by Jenny Burns Nashville Business Journal

There's a silver lining in the lack-luster numbers that show the woes of local home sales - the top end of the market is demonstrating its resilience.
Sales increased in most price ranges above $400,000 between last year and this year - illustrating the effect that the subprime meltdown and lender tightening has had on middle income buyers, according to an analysis of Multiple Listing Service home sales by price range.
"The lower priced homes are where we've seen the most tightening in the mortgage market," says Mark Vitner, Wachovia economist. "It's become much more difficult to qualify for a home."

But homes affordable to middle income families and first time buyers have taken a hit.
Home sales dropped 10 percent in the $100,000 to $199,999 range - from 17,091 sales during Jan. 1 through Oct. 30 of last year to 15,396 sales in the same time period this year. Sales dropped 12 percent in the $200,000 to $299,999 range.

The $300,000 to $399,999 range saw a decline of 6 percent. The higher ranges show sales increases or sales at the same level. The largest increase was in the $800,000 to $899,999 range with an 8 percent increase in sales. The $1 million plus market also had a 7 percent jump.

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