Virginia home sales and prices in October gained significantly over their year-ago levels, according to the Virginia Association of Realtors.

During the month of October, 11,365 home sales were closed, up approximately 5.3 percent over last October’s 10,795. Year-to-date, 114,338 transactions have closed, an approximately 10.3 percent increase over the 103,699 closed sales during the same period last year.

The median price of a single-family home rose to $161,525 in October, up approximately 16.3 percent from $138,950 posted for October 2003. The median is the midpoint, which is a typical market price where half of the homes sold for more and half sold for less.

“The recent findings of the 2004 National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers showed that four out of ten home purchases are by first-time buyers, and that the market share of first-time buyers has been stable since 1993,” said VAR President Tom Jewell of Leesburg. “We’re told that this trend will continue to fuel the home-buying marketplace, as the children of the baby boom generation will be in their prime home-buying years over the next decade. With more first-time buyers in the market, and the continued low rates, there are greater opportunities for homeowners to move up to another home.”

The Virginia Association of Realtors is one of the state’s largest individual membership trade association with more than 30,000 members.

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