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Mass. home sales have best May in seven years

The sale of single-family homes in Massachusetts rose 6 percent in May on a year-to-year comparison basis as the number of transactions hit their highest May level in seven years, the Warren Group said Tuesday.

A total of 4,820 single-family homes were sold in the Bay State last month.

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Meanwhile, median home prices rose for the eighth straight month, the Warren Group said. The median price for single-family homes sold in May was up almost 12 percent to $324,500 from $290,000 in May 2012, said the Warren Group, a Boston firm that tracks real estate activity.

“Now that we’re well into the prime spring selling season, activity is increasing for sales volume as expected,” Timothy M. Warren Jr., chief executive of the Warren Group, said in a statement. “We’re expecting home sales to continue to rise on a year-over-year basis this summer. Median prices have increased by double-digit percentages for four straight months and show no signs of slowing.”

Timothy Warren added: “The rise in prices has been a result of tight inventory. It’s concerning to see prices rise at this rapid rate. Pent-up demand for homes from buyers who postponed their purchase plans is driving up prices. Consumers are rushing to buy before prices and interest rates get too high.”

As for condominiums in Massachusetts, sales rose more than 5 percent to 2,015 in May. The median sale price of a condominium in Massachusetts was $295,000 in May, a 2.2 percent increase from May of last year, the Warren Group said.

Separately, the Massachusetts Association of Realtors issued a report of its own on monthly sales activity. The association uses a different method to track sales.

In a statement, association president Kimberly Allard-Moccia said: “We knew the buyers were out there in the late winter/early spring and now we’re seeing the results of that activity. With each month of sales and price increases, we should begin to see the number of homes for sale start to increase, which is good for the market.”

Chris Reidy can be reached at
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