Housing sales in the Baltimore region continued their slide in the cold, gray days of January, marking the fifth consecutive month in which the number of sales was lower than a year earlier.
Sales volume for the month was down by 7.5 percent compared to last year, according to data provided by MarketStats by ShowingTime based on listing activity from Bright MLS.
But amid the housing slump that there were promising signs, for sellers and for buyers.
Sellers were getting higher prices for their homes. The median sale price rose 4.6 percent compared to last year, to $249,900.
Prices have been rising for the past three years, and the price in January marked the highest price level for that month of the decade. It also marked the largest year-over-year gain since September.
Tight inventory has contributed to the price increases. The numbers of houses on the market remain below the five- and 10-year averages.
New listings, however, increased by 7.3 percent to 3,683 for the region, which could benefit buyers. That was the highest January of the decade.
Active listings were were up 3.7 percent at the end of the month, the fourth consecutive month they have increased.
Sellers were getting about 94.4 percent of their asking prices, a small dip from last year.
Around the region, prices rose in every county but Carroll, where January’s median price was down 1.4 percent to $315,000, compared to January 2018.
Baltimore City had the largest gain in prices, a 28.1 percent jump from last year. It still remains the region’s least expensive jurisdiction to buy a home with a median price of $114,000.
Howard County median prices were up 0.7 percent to $360,000, making it the region’s costliest county.