You can blame the winter weather for last month's slowdown in the housing market. Home sales in Ohio were off 4.3 percent compared to a year ago when the weather wasn't as harsh. It was the second consecutive month statewide closings dropped.
“A survey of the state’s real estate professionals conducted during the month found that two-thirds of respondents indicated that the cold, snowy conditions resulted in a marked decline in home buying activity," said Chris Hall, president of the Ohio Association of Realtors, in a statement.
Like the national housing market, home sales in Cincinnati declined last month. The Cincinnati Area Board of Realtors said closings fell a little more than 7 percent in January compared to a year earlier. It's the first time in more than two years the local market has experienced a drop in closings.
Board president Ken Parchman compares it to the stock market. "Our home sales activity will experience occasional dips as we continue our upward growth," he said in a statement.
Area realtors say 2013 ended on a high note for home sales. The Cincinnati Area Board of Realtors is reporting December closings rose 14.2 percent compared to a year earlier. For the entire year, sales increased 20.84 percent. The average home price rose 5.75 percent last year to $165,037.
"The Greater Cincinnati Housing Market continues to improve at a moderate rate," said Ken Parchman, President of the CABR, in a statement. "Our low inventory coupled with relatively low interest rates and stronger demand pushed the average price higher."
Home sales in Cincinnati ended last year at the highest level since 2007. The Area Board of Realtors says closings were up 12 percent from 2011. December home sales rose more than 5 percent compared to the same month a year ago.
Greater Cincinnati home sales are up for the fifteenth month in a row. In Cincinnati the gain was bigger at 11% when compared to the same month last year.
Northern Kentucky's sales increase was just 2%. In both places median prices are increasing and home inventories are declining, a sign realtors say indicates the buyer's advantage is starting to shrink.
September 2012: Closings: 1,588 Average Price: $158,219
September 2011: Closings: 1,430 Average Price: $151,633