Home sales up slightly in Clark County but sales prices drop

Home sales increased slightly in Clark County through most of last year, while sales in Champaign County fell, according to the most recent data available.

In Clark County, 1,039 residential properties sold through last September, up about 4 percent compared to the same period in 2016, according to the Clark County Board of Realtors. The average sale price dipped slightly, however, from about $117,400 in 2016 to $115,800 last year, said Sunny Dhingra, president of the Springfield Board of Realtors.

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That’s the highest total number of sales in Clark County for that period in about eight years, Dhingra said. It’s not clear why sale prices may have dropped, he said, although several factors, including inventory and the quality of homes available could play a role.

Information from the Western Ohio Regional Multiple Listing Service showed 847 residential properties sold in Clark County in 2014, and 980 sold in 2015. Clark County saw 1,003 residential properties sold from January to September in 2016 and 1,039 for the same period last year.

Clark County home sales didn’t plunge as dramatically as some other parts of the country during the Great Recession, Dhingra said, so the improvements have been smaller as well.

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“Since we didn’t have a 50 percent drop (in home sales), we’re not going to have a 30 percent jump,” he said.

In Champaign County, 281 residential properties were sold through September last year, down about 9 percent from 2016, according to WRIST data. However, home prices there rose about 3 percent last year.

One challenge that continues to affect Clark County is a lack of available homes on the market, Dhingra said. Few new homes have been constructed in recent years in the area, although local leaders have said efforts are underway to study the problem and potentially consider incentives to spur new development.

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Ohio’s housing marketplace was solid statewide last year, according to the Ohio Association of Realtors, setting records for sales activity, average sales price and total dollar volume. That agency showed a seasonally adjusted statewide rate of 151,748 home sales last year, about a 2 percent increase from 2016. The average sales price statewide was $172,870, almost a 6 percent boost from the previous year.

“It was a solid year in terms of the housing market,” said Carl Horst, a spokesman for the Ohio Association of Realtors. “We didn’t see any big swings in activity. It was just slow, steady growth.”

MORE COVERAGE: Clark County officials look for options to increase housing

Information from the Columbus Realtors service, which includes parts of Clark and Champaign counties, also shows that region also fared well as a whole. Central Ohio saw home and condo sales of about 32,000, a 1.7 increase over 2016 and the highest number of homes sold on record for a single year.

The average sales price in central Ohio was $214,802, about 6 percent higher than the previous year.

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