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Slightly fewer sales, yet homes going faster

Home sale settlements in the Greater Lehigh Valley cooled a bit in July, except for the Poconos and Berks County.

Home sale settlements in the Greater Lehigh Valley cooled a bit in July, except for the Poconos and Berks County.

The Poconos, in fact, saw a leap of nearly 16 percent in home sales. Meanwhile, homes sold spent fewer days on the market across the region compared to July 2013.

The overall region saw a drop in sales in July by 58 homes, a 3.8 percent decrease when compared to last July.

“Houses that are priced properly are moving quickly,” said Trish Husted, real estate agent with Coldwell Banker Hearthside Realtors, Hellertown.

The Lehigh Valley itself saw 78 fewer homes sold, falling from 734 homes sold last July to 656 sold last month. Those homes sat an average of six days shorter on the market.

“In our particular area in the Saucon Valley, there seems to be a sufficient inventory of under $200,000, but between $2- and $350,000, there is very little inventory,” Husted said. “So when something does come up when it’s in good condition, it goes quickly.”

She said she sees a lot of first-time homebuyers and people downsizing who are making those purchases.

“I am not seeing a lot of people moving up because they are afraid to make that move because of the uncertainty of the market,” she said. “This year, I feel the majority of what I am selling is $2- to $400,000, but I’m seeing more of them. The higher-priced homes I sold last year were real deals, and I think the deals are over.”

Deals in nearby Berks County remain less elusive where home sales grew slightly over a half percent comparing July 2014 to July 2013 while average days on market fell by four days.

“Average sale price interestingly enough in the month of June was up 3 percent,” said Bob Miller, principal/owner of Keller Williams Realty Elite, West Lawn. “But it looks like we are only tracking 1 to 1.5 percent up for the year thus far.

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