July home sales struggle to keep pace with 2013

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – A new home sales report suggests that the local real estate market is struggling this year to keep pace with last year.

A single family home sales report shows an 11% year over year sales decline for the month of July in Hampen County and 3% in Hampshire County.

Tom Masters is a Realtor for Murphy’s Realtors in Northampton. He says nowadays, many potential first time home buyers simply prefer to rent.

“For a lot of young people they are not interested in home ownership and the maintenance and mowing the grass. Not with technology and the things they are into, no,” said Masters.

David Raccis of Wilbraham told 22News, “It’s very expensive to buy a starter home and that is not helping the next tier move up and that next tier from that move up so I really think that first time home buyers are the issue.”

Masters says that after the housing market the collapse of 2007, banks made it more difficult for people with sketchy credit to to get a loan, and now that people have gotten used to low interest rates, it’s no longer a motivator for people to buy.

He noted that people go on vacation in July and says it’s not time to hit the panic button.

“Come back and lets talk at the end of October and then I think you will see a big difference,” said Masters.

Still, people told 22News the housing market isn’t what it used to be.

“Back then, the market was hot and it was hard to even find a home that you wanted to buy and if you did find one, there were often bidding wars, so the prices would go up beyond the asking price,” said Jamie Albro-Fisher of Northampton.

The report shows that homes sales across the entire Pioneer Valley are down 5%.

If your looking to buy a home, interest rates are still low. The average interest rate for a 30 year fixed mortgage is 4.12%.

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