Sep
30

Home Sales Fall 29 Percent in Columbia

By
September 30, 2008

By Kristy Eppley Rupon – The State

Columbia suffered its biggest monthly setback in home sales this year in August.

Sales of new and existing homes tumbled 29 percent compared with August 2007, according to a report released Monday from the S.C. Realtors trade group.

Sales have, for the most part, gotten progressively worse each month in 2008 as real estate agents and builders contend with overbuilding in a sluggish market. Sales so far in 2008 are down 18percent in Columbia.

“Builders a lot of time have the tendency to try to build themselves out of recession,” said Wade McGuinn, president of Columbia’s McGuinn Homes.

Home builders in the Columbia area have taken out 35 percent fewer permits for single-family homes in the first eight months of 2008.

But that strategy backfired this year as the subprime lending market crashed and banks tightened lending standards, making it harder for buyers to get a loan.

“There’s money, it’s there, but I think that there’s a lot more credit challenges,” said Diane Martin, a real estate agent with Century 21 Bob Capes Realtors.

ARTICLE SHORTENED DUE TO LENGTH….

LINK TO ARTICLE HERE:

http://www.thestate.com/business/story/539891.html
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