Central and Northwest Arkansas continue to be the most active regional markets for home sales in the state, with the Fort Smith and Jonesboro regions seeing home sales fall behind what was a slow 2011 pace.
There were 1,727 homes sold during May in the four large market areas measured by the The City Wire’s Arkansas Home Sales Report, up 9.79% compared to May 2011, but down almost 14% compared to May 2010.
The City Wire’s Arkansas Home Sales Report captures home sales data in the state’s 14 most populated counties within the state’s four largest metro areas — Central Arkansas, Fort Smith area, Jonesboro/Northeast Arkansas and Northwest Arkansas. The report, which records closed sales, accounts for between 70% and 75% of total Arkansas home sales.
During the first five months of the year, home sales in the four markets totaled 6,952, up 3.42% compared to the same period in 2011, but down 10.08% compared to the same period in 2010.
Michael Pakko, University of Arkansas Institute for Economic Advancement chief economist and state economic forecaster, predicted earlier this year that sales would improve throughout 2012. He said 2011 was one of the worst years on record for home sales.
So far, his prediction has proven true as sales have been up through May. Pakko is waiting to see how sales go in the summer months as those will go a long way toward indicating the health of Arkansas’ housing market
. June, July and August, he said, are traditionally the months in which home sales are strongest.
Still, he said May sales reports are important to consider.
“Looking at the seasonal patterns, May is usually a relatively strong month – although usually not as important as June, July and August,” Pakko explained. “Over the past five years, May sales have accounted for approximately 10% of total annual sales. … Strong growth for the month translates into improved figures for year-to-date sales.”
REGIONAL FIGURES (Year-to-date)
Central Arkansas — Home sales
Jan.-May 2012: 3,362
Jan.-May 2011: 3,135
Jan.-May 2010: 3,942
Fort Smith area — Home sales
Jan.-May 2012: 628
Jan.-May 2011: 651
Jan.-May 2010: 784
Jonesboro area — Home sales
Jan.-May 2012: 658
Jan.-May 2011: 704
Jan.-May 2010: 795
Northwest Arkansas — Home sales
Jan.-May 2012: 2,304
Jan.-May 2011: 2,232
Jan.-May 2010: 2,210
You can read more on the report from The City Wire as well as market commentary from locals at this link.
Michael Tilley with our content partner, The City Wire, is the author of this report. He can be reached by email at email@example.com.