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N.H. home sales, prices continue to rise in September

New Hampshire home sales were up 15.4 percent in September compared with a year earlier, and sale prices rose 12.1 percent over the same period.

The New Hampshire Association of Realtors announced yesterday that 1,419 homes were sold last month, compared with 1,230 in September 2012 – the 22nd consecutive month of year-over-year sale increases. A total of 11,512 homes were sold in the first nine months of 2013, up 12.8 percent from the first three quarters of 2012.

The median price of a home sold in September was $213,000, up from $190,000 a year earlier. Median sale prices rose 9.9 percent in the first nine months of 2013 compared with the same period in 2012, to $210,000, the group said.

“To the extent that there is such a thing as a normal market, I would say we’re just about there,” said Bill Weidacher, a Bedford Realtor and the association’s president, in a news release. “You’ll always find distinctions in local markets, but from a statewide perspective, things truly are returning to normal.”

Sales were flat last month in Coos County, but they rose in the state’s nine other counties. Sale prices rose in seven counties compared with a year earlier, but fell in Belknap, Cheshire and Sullivan counties.

In Merrimack County, 159 homes were sold in September, up 15.2 percent from the 138 sold in September 2012, and the median sale price last month was $183,000, up 2.5 percent from a year earlier.

In the first nine months of 2013, 1,239 Merrimack County homes were sold, up 13.6 percent from the same period in 2012, and median sale price rose 8.6 percent, to $190,000.

The September figures don’t reflect any potential impact of the 16-day partial shutdown of the federal government that began Oct. 1. Some industry observers, including the national Mortgage Bankers Association, had warned that a prolonged shutdown could hurt the real estate market by slowing the lending process, though others said the effects should be minimal.

(Ben Leubsdorf can be reached at 369-3307 or bleubsdorf@cmonitor.com or on Twitter @BenLeubsdorf.)

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