Photo: Calvin Chin/Flickr

Last month was the hottest October on record — but not for US home sales. American-based international real estate company Re/Max US said home sales cooled off in October.

Sales last month dropped off 7.7 percent from September and were down 0.8 percent compared to October 2014, according to the most recent Re/Max National Housing Report.

Over the past eight years, the average month-to-month sales decline from September to October has been 3.4 percent. So far this year, January is the only other month to have seen home sales decline year-over-year.

October’s declines come in the wake of strong activity this past August, when sales and prices outpaced the 10-year average for the month.

The Re/Max report tracked 53 metro areas and is based on data acquired from MLS systems across the country.

Twenty metro areas saw a higher level of sales in October than during the same month in 2014, led by Burlington, Vermont where sales climbed 14.5 percent year-over-year.

The median price of all residential properties sold in October was $205,000, a 6.5 percent appreciation from the same time last year. Last month marked the 45th straight month in which the median price increased.

Honolulu was the hottest of the 46 markets that saw year-over-year price increases in October. Last month, prices in the Hawaiian capital were up 22.9 percent from October 2014.

Averaged out, prices have increased year-over-year by an average of 7.5 per cent each month over the first 10 months of 2015.

While American home prices continued to climb in October, the number of homes on the market was down 13.1 percent from the same month last year.
“We’ve seen a very strong demand for homes in 2015 despite the continuing challenges of low inventory,” said Dave Liniger, Re/Max’s CEO, chairman of the board, and co-founder, in a statement. “Demand is mostly due to the slowly improving economy and a more favorable employment situation.”

If October’s pace of home sales continued and no new homes were listed, inventory would sell out in 4.5 months.

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