Mass. homes took twice as long to sell in 2007
A survey of Massachusetts residents found that a single-family home took an average of eight weeks to sell in 2007, up from four weeks in 2006.
That was one finding from the 2007 Massachusetts Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers compiled by the National Association of Realtors, a trade group, with the help of the Massachusetts Association of Realtors.
According to residents participating in the survey, many of their homes last year sold for 97 percent of their asking price, and 42 percent of Massachusetts sellers who responded to the survey said they didn't reduce their asking price at all, the realtors groups said.
The realtor groups added that the number of For-Sale-By-Owner transactions in Massachusetts declined 5 percent to 13 percent in 2007 compared to the year before.
Based on survey results, the realtor groups said that 53 percent of Massachusetts home buyers in 2007 were married couples, while 24 percent were single women, 10 percent single men, and 11 percent unmarried couples.
The median age of first-time home buyers last year was unchanged at 32, but as a group, there was a drop in the number of buyers between the ages of 25 to 34.
In 2006, that demographic accounted for 60 percent of first-time home sales in Massachusetts, but dropped to 49 percent in 2007, the realtor groups said.
"The drop in the number of buyers in the 25-34-year-old age group is further evidence of the exodus of this educated group from our state and the continued need for the development of starter homes," Susan M. Renfrew, president of the Massachusetts Association of Realtors, said in a statement.
(By Chris Reidy, Globe staff)