Real estate sales in Ohio and Illinois cooled for the fifth straight month in August, as rising for-sale inventory sent home prices falling, according to statistics provided by Realtor associations in both states. In Ohio, sales of new and existing homes last month totaled 14,455, down 7.3 percent from the record 15,590 sales posted during the same month a year ago, the Ohio Association of Realtors reported. The month's average sales price of $159,184 is a 3.5 percent decrease from $164,978 posted a year ago, and is down from July's median of $160,985. "There are a number of factors contributing to the recent cooling of the Ohio housing market, including fluctuating interest rates, higher energy costs and less-than-robust economic growth throughout the Buckeye State," said Darlene Breen, president of the Ohio Association of Realtors. In Illinois, total homes sales (which include single-family and condominiums) were down 13.7 percent in August to 17,276 homes sold, compared with 20,01...
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