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Home prices continue to climb in Utah’s capital
Wasatch Front » Price jump puts Salt Lake among top 25 major U.S. cities; Davis, Utah, Tooele and Weber counties also gain.
First Published Oct 25 2012 07:44 pm • Last Updated Feb 07 2013 11:32 pm

The Wasatch Front real estate market continues its recovery from the Great Recession, with the Salt Lake Board of Realtors reporting Monday that Salt Lake County saw an 11 percent increase in the median price of homes sold in the third quarter over the same period last year, while the number of homes that sold also rose by double digits.

The rise in the median price was the first time in five years that home sale prices increased in a third quarter, and the second consecutive quarter in which they rose. Home prices in the second quarter increased 6 percent year-over-year, also the first time that has happened in the five years since the nation’s housing bubble began to pop.

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Donna Pozzuoli, president of the Salt Lake Board of Realtors, said the recent price increases are in part the result of low inventory levels. In the July-September period there were 3,938 homes listed for sale in Salt Lake County, the lowest level for a third quarter since 1997 when 2,838 homes were listed for sale.

"Short sales and foreclosures that have kind of saturated our market over the last few years have declined," she said. "I’m not going to say that could not come back because it could."

Pozzuoli said she believes inventory levels could remain low for six to eight months.

Utah’s foreclosure activity dropped 60 percent in the third quarter compared to a year earlier, according to the real estate data company RealtyTrac.

There were 2,982 single-family homes sold in Salt Lake County in the third quarter, a 12 percent increase over the same period last year. Single-family homes were on the market an average of 81 days before a sale, down from 120 days in last year’s third quarter.

Zip codes that experienced the sharpest prices increases from the third quarter of last year were 84123 (Kearns), up 21 percent to $208,500; 84124 (Holladay), up 17 percent to $295,000; 84109 (Canyon Rim), up 13 percent to $284,900; 84093 (Sandy) up 12 percent at $306,950; 84081 (West Jordan), up 11 percent at $227,000.

Board of Realtor statistics show Davis County saw a whopping 23.2 percent increase in home sales in the July-August period, with the median price up 8.4 percent over the previous quarter. Tooele County sales were up 7.6 percent, with the median price up 4.1 percent. Utah County sales rose 8.9 percent and the median price 6.2 percent. In Weber County, house sales increased 17.1 percent and median price 7.9 percent.

The median price is the point at which half of the homes sold have a higher value and half a lower one.

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Twitter: @TomHarveySltrib

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