Homes for sale inventory stays stable

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After peaking last February, the inventory of houses for sale in Clark County continues to stabilize, according to a RMLS report on Wednesday.

The favorable trend is the result of improved home sales and a sharp decline in new listings as sellers hold properties off the market until prices improve.

According to the Portland-based RMLS, which only tracks homes sold through its multiple listing service, sales this year through November in Clark County were up 11 percent, while pending sales grew by 19.2 percent and new listings dropped by 23.4 percent.

Last month. 469 new and pre-owned homes were sold in the county through the multiple with a median price of $198,500, down from $225,000 in November 2008. Year-to-date sales totaled 4,616, up from 4,157 in the same time frame last year.

The median sales prices is down 12.8 percent.

Total market time from listing to sale for the houses that sold last month was nearly unchanged at 151 days.

The good news about the local market showed up in the inventory number, now holding at about a seven-month supply. That means that if no more houses were listed to sell, it would take seven months to sell the houses now listed. Inventory has been holding in the seven-month range since July, the RMLS report showed.

When compared to the greater Portland area, Clark County’s housing market has begun to look more robust. The metro area also had a seven-month supply of homes for sale in November, but pending sales for the year are up only 2.6 percent and closed sales were down 4.1 percent.

The metro-area median price in November was down 11.6 percent from 2008 at $239,000.