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Home sales soar as agents see big 2015

Winter’s long hold has let go, finally yielding buds, blooms and residential homebuyers.

Winter’s long hold has let go, finally yielding buds, blooms and residential homebuyers.

Homebuyers in the Greater Lehigh Valley closed sales on 1,198 residential properties in March, 19.1 percent or 192 more homes than in March 2014.

It’s a solid trend showing signs of continuing as pending sales grew 16.5 percent during the same period.

“Overall, we are seeing on a closed basis properties that sold and settled, an increase in March of ’15 versus ’14 of 71.4 percent,” Brad Patt, senior vice president of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Fox & Roach, Coopersburg, said for his company. “Another strong increase was the properties under contract. The under-contract properties increased March over March [by] 31 percent.”

That increase translates into a corresponding bump in closed sales in the next 30 to 60 days. All in all, it promises to be a heady and busy time for real estate agents in the region.

“I have had the best spring I have had in several years,” said Craig Binkley, owner of Binkley Jr. Real Estate, Mount Penn, Berks County. “Activity is also better than it has been in recent years. Sales are quite good, and I see a nice 2015 coming out of this.”

To the west, another real estate agent agrees.

“We had a crazy first quarter here, and I am not sure why,” said Kim Hillegas, broker and co-owner of Charlotte A. Solt Real Estate, with offices in Schuylkill and Carbon counties. “We didn’t really slow down like we normally do in the winter. We have continued the pace we actually started in January.”

Agents believe inventory plays a pivotal role in the residential real estate market moving forward.

According to Patt, the National Association of Realtors cites a normal market holding a six months’ supply of inventory.

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