Homes sales in Arkansas increased in September by 9.85 percent compared with the same month a year ago, according to the Arkansas Realtors Association. The value of houses sold also rose, though the average sales price slipped 5.07 percent.
Throughout Arkansas, there were 2,298 homes sold in September compared with 2,092 sales in the same month a year ago, the association said. September marked only the second month out of the past 44 where sales have been ahead in month-to-month comparison. The last time sales rose was in July.
The total value of new and existing homes sold by members of the association in September was $324.46 million, up 4.28 percent from $311.16 million in the same month last year. The average sales price fell 5.07 percent to $141,193.
The gains and the drop in average sales prices can be attributed to the first-time homebuyer tax credit, the association said. People were rushing to buy homes throughout September so they could close on them by Nov. 30, the deadline under the first-time homebuyer tax credit before it was extended.
Because first-time homebuyers in Arkansas tend to purchase houses that cost around $150,000 or less, the average sales price dropped in September, the association said. Members of the association reported homes at that price point were moving out of inventory quickly.
Members of the association have reported healthy sales in October, though those are only anecdotal accounts.