Twin Cities median home prices up second month in a rowby Annie Baxter, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — The Twin Cities median home sale price in February was $159,000, a six percent increase over the year before.
That rise is the second consecutive month of year-over-year increases. The February median price was also up slightly from the month before.
Herb Tousley, director of the Shanahan Center for Real Estate at the University of St. Thomas, said that makes him cautiously optimistic.
"The market as a whole is showing some stability and even a little bit of increase. Two months might not be a trend, but it certainly is encouraging," Tousley said.
But Tousley said he'll be watching how the market behaves after the federal first time homebuyer and move-up buyer credits expire in April.
"I think that we're definitely pulling some business ahead," Tousley said. "People who might have waited till spring or summer are basically doing something motivated by this tax credit. So it will be interesting to see how May and June look, after the tax credit ends, whether the market is showing stability there."
Local realtor groups say the median price climbed because fewer foreclosed homes sold last month compared to the same time a year earlier.
Signed purchase agreements and completed home sales were also both up in February over the past 12 months.
Completed home sales in February were up 4 percent from the month before on a seasonally-adjusted basis, and the percentage of those sales involving lender-mediated or distressed properties dropped slightly from January.