Ohio Home Sales Up In October

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Report by Bill Rice

Sales of new and existing homes and condos in October increased d by 7 percent in Ohio over October of 2008, according to the just-released figures.

Analysts generally credit the federal 8000-dollar first-time home buyer tax credit that was set to expire next week for the increase. Now that credit has been extended, and expanded to include current homeowners who have been in their homes five years and want to buy a new principle residence - those people qualify for a 65 hundred dollar credit.

That's expected to keep the home-selling momentum going, says Dianna Hosta-Stickney, who heads the Cleveland area Board of Realtors.

Hosta-Stickney : "November is when the activity seems to slow down, and I think with this extended tax credit I think people that were on the fence really realize this may be their last opportunity to get that 8,000 dollar tax credit with this extension."

The Northeast Ohio Real Estate Exchange, an MLS covering 15 counties including Cuyahoga, Summit and Lorain, showed negative growth. A precise comparison isn't possible because of a database merger last January. However, says Hosta-Stickney, it's pretty clear, from county by county reports, that the region is not doing as well.

Hosta-Stickney: "Our numbers are still going to be reflective of the economy we have here and the loss of jobs."

On a positive note, Northeast Ohio HAS seen an uptick in home prices.


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