March home sales up 5.2% nationwide

Why all the negative headlines? Home sales were up in March, not down. Yes, they were down from month to month, but month-to-month figures don’t matter! What counts is year-to-year trends.

Here’s the important fact: Total existing home sales increased to 4.48 million in March, up 5.2% from the 4.26 million-unit pace in March 2011.

March 2008: 4.95 million
March 2009: 4.61 million
March 2010: 5.35 million (homebuyer tax credit in effect)
March 2011: 4.26 million
March 2012: 4.48 million

(Note that these are “seasonally adjusted annual rates,” meaning that if every month was like March 2012, 4.48 million homes would be sold in a year.)

So we had drop, drop, tax-credit, drop — and now a gain. That’s good news.

Put another way, this is the first March since 2008 that we’ve seen an increase in sales, not counting the artificial 2010 bump.

About Andrew Kantor

Andrew is VAR's editor and information manager, and -- lessee now -- a former reporter for the Roanoke Times, former technology columnist for USA Today, and a former magazine editor for a bunch of places. He hails from New York with stops in Connecticut, New Jersey, Cincinnati, Columbus, and Roanoke.
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