Midwest housing sales continued to slump in November, down 30.6 percent from November 2009 when buyers were chasing the federal government's housing tax credit, a national analyst reported.
It's the fifth month in a row that overall housing sales fell, according to analysts at the Colorado-based real estate group Real Trends.
The only bright spot in November was a sharp rise in average prices, up 7.3 percent from November 2009.
Nationally, the rate of decline was 25.7 percent, said Steve Murray, editor of the Real Trends Housing Market Report.
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Housing unit sales for all regions fell in the last 12 months with the Northeast showing the greatest decline of 32.2 percent. The West had the smallest decline at 19.2 percent.
"The housing market continues to suffer the effects of record high unemployment and restrictions in the sale of foreclosed homes," Murray said.
"The halt in foreclosure proceedings appeared to have impacted sales significantly. Foreclosure and distressed home sales are a significant portion of all sales in the first 10 months of 2010 and it appears that purchasers are waiting for more inventory. The annualized rate fell 15.4 percent from last month which indicates that housing continues to face strong obstacles in getting back to a healthy condition."