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N.H. home sales fall, prices steady

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 8, 2007New Hampshire home prices took only a minor hit, but sales volume dropped in the first half of 2007, according to the New Hampshire Association of Realtors.

Residential sales volume in the first six months of 2007 was 5,929 units, down 9.3 percent from the 6,539 units sold in the first half of 2006 and down 22 percent from 2004 -- the peak year, when 7,594 units sold between January and June, according to the trade group.

Residential sale prices remained relatively stable in the first six months of 2007 at an average of $303,038 -- a 1.6 percent decline from last year's average of $307,875, which was the peak year historically for January-to-June sale prices. And the June average of just under $313,000 marked the fourth consecutive month in 2007 that the average price has increased.

"During this serious housing downturn in other parts of the nation, values in New Hampshire are holding up quite well," said NHAR demographer Peter Francese, who also pointed to the fact that New Hampshire has one of the lowest home foreclosure rates in the nation as a positive sign.

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The decrease in volume and a six-day increase in average days on market (108 in June 2006, 114 in June 2007) has led to a large number of active residential listings.

As of July 16, there was more than a nine-month supply of inventory, with over 12,700 listings in New Hampshire, and 1,377 residences having sold in June, according to NHAR. - JEFF FEINGOLD

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