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Spokane-area home sales rise in July

Spokane home sales picked up in July, but with minor drops in average and median sales prices, the Spokane Association of Realtors said.

Home sales in July grew to 626, up from 600 in June, said Rob Higgins, the association’s chief executive.

Median prices during July fell to $169,800. In June the median sales price was $171,750, the high-water mark so far during 2014.

“This is typical for Spokane, with a slow gradual improvement over the course of the year,” Higgins said. “We are not boom or bust.”

July’s average home sale price was $186,795, also down from June’s $189,834, Higgins said.

Those overall market prices are down, he surmised, because of a drop in sales of newly built homes – which typically sell at above the average existing home price. In 2013 at this point, Realtors reported 402 new homes sold; this year it’s down to 347, Higgins added.

Behind that slump in new-home sales is some resistance from buyers regarding slightly higher interest rates, he said.

The busiest area of town for home sales in July was northwest Spokane, particularly near the Indian Trail and Nine Mile areas, he said.

July also saw the area’s first million-dollar-plus home sale since May 2013. A home in the Rockwood Boulevard neighborhood of the South Hill sold for $1.1 million.

The next two highest sales in July were a downtown condo, selling for $950,000, and an upper South Hill home selling for $720,000.

“The condo sale was a bit surprising. We don’t usually see those selling for that price,” Higgins said.

Spokane registered 3,177 homes sold so far this year through July 30. There were 3,100 sold during the first seven months of 2013, the association reported.