Maine’s housing market bounced back in April following months of relative decline in sales volume and price growth.

Home sales in Maine also bucked regional and national trends, increasing in volume while sales in the U.S. and Northeast declined.

Sales of existing single-family homes in Maine increased by 4.8 percent in April compared with a year earlier, according to a report issued Tuesday by Maine Listings.

The statewide median sale price of homes rose by 5 percent in April compared with a year earlier to $210,000, the report said. The median indicates that half of homes sold for more money and half sold for less.

“After a few months of decline, the April and rolling quarter data has tilted back into positive territory with gains in units sold and median (sale) prices,” said Peter Harrington, president of the Maine Association of Realtors and broker/partner with Malone Commercial Brokers in Portland. “For-sale inventory remains limited in most markets, which has kept values healthy, especially where job growth is occurring.”

In March, Maine home sales began to decline slightly compared with a year earlier, reversing an upward trend that had lasted about three years. Coupled with flat sales in January and February, some industry observers speculated that the Maine home sale market had reached its peak after a record-breaking 2018.


But April numbers brightened that forecast. For the three-month period ending April 30, statewide home sales in Maine increased by 0.6 percent compared with the same period of 2018, while the median sale price increased by 2.2 percent to $208,000.

Around the state, the biggest increase in sales for the three-month period compared with a year earlier was 31.8 percent in Lincoln County (from 88 sales to 116), while the biggest decrease was 30.8 percent (from 130 sales to 90) in Aroostook County.

The biggest increase in median price compared with a year earlier occurred in Hancock County, where the price rose 24.4 percent to $238,000. The biggest decrease was in Waldo County, where the price fell 10.3 percent to $152,500.

“We’re approaching the traditional peak season for activity with plenty of buyers searching,” Harrington said. “A strong 2019 will be dependent on the number of existing homeowners looking to sell. These existing owners are also impacted by the limited inventory and are hesitant to put their homes on the market because they’re not readily finding their next housing option.”

Nationally, sales fell by 4 percent in April compared with a year earlier, while the median sale price was up by 3.7 percent to $269,300, according to the National Association of Realtors. Sales in the Northeast region decreased by 4.5 percent, while the regional median sale price rose by 0.9 percent, it said.

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