Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Albuquerque Housing Review

It's four and counting. For the fourth year in a row, Albuquerque has set a record in sales of existing homes - and it didn't take a year to do it. The record was broken in November when 900 homes were sold, bringing the year's total to 10,347, 131 more than the 2003 count of 10,216. With the exception of January, new monthly records have been set every month this year through November. October was the sixth month in a row that more than 1,000 homes were sold, a showing unrivaled in the more than 20 years that records have been kept by the Albuquerque Metropolitan Board of Realtors. The city had never topped 1,000 homes sales in a month until July of last year, when 1,110 were sold. Some 1,054 homes sold the following month, and then sales dropped below the 1,000 mark. Sales hit 1,029 in May of this year, followed by 1,157 in June, 1,131 in July, 1,146 in August, 1,022 in September and 1,001 in October, all monthly records. The 674 homes sold in February were the highest of any February on record, and the same held true for the 833 homes sold in March and 921 in April. The total through November was 9.1 percent ahead of the same 11 months of 2003. November's sales were 32.5 percent higher than last November. First time buyers are fueling the market in homes under $135,000. At the higher end are buyers benefiting from the city's improving economic climate. With a job growth rate of about 2 percent this year, Albuquerque is one of the more thriving cities in the country. More people are buying homes as an investment. Real estate purchases are allowed within certain types of individual retirement accounts, called self-directed IRAs.On Dec. 1, there were 2,572 existing single-family homes in the board's Southwest Multiple Listing Service, which covers Albuquerque, Rio Rancho, Placitas, Corrales, Los Lunas and the area in the mountains east of Albuquerque. The number of listings has topped 5,000 in other years. It's a wonderful time to learn about the Albuquerque market, and a wonderful time to start investing in Albuquerque's future.
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