Home sales in the Twin Cities, Minn., area fell in August for the fifth straight month as rising inventory flattened home prices, according to reports from three Twin Cities-area Realtor associations.

Realtors recorded 5,079 closed home sales last month, down 27.2 percent from 6,979 sales in August 2005. During the same period, the median home price in the 13-county region was essentially unchanged at $235,000, compared with $234,900 a year ago, and was down slightly from $235,459 in July.

In Anoka County, closed home sales dropped 33 percent in August from a year ago to 466 sales, and Sherburne County sales declined 22 percent during the period to 142, the North Metro Realtors Association reported.

Sellers are starting to take notice of the changing conditions of the local real estate market, as evidenced by the lower level of new listings added last month, according to NMRA.

There were 10,071 new listings added last month to the metro area’s existing inventory, a record high for the month of August but just 2.8 percent above the level in August 2005. This is the smallest percentage increase in new listings reported in more than a year, the Saint Paul Area Association of Realtors said.

“We still have more listings on the market right now than we’ve ever had,” said Jeff Green, NMRA president. “But it appears that some sellers are deciding to wait a little longer before putting their home up for sale.”

At the end of August there were 31,263 single-family units on the market, 34 percent higher than at the same point in 2005. Though slight, this is the first decline in month-end inventory this year, as 31,367 homes were on the market in July, according to statistics.

Statistics are provided by the Saint Paul Area Association of Realtors, Minneapolis Area Association of Realtors, and North Metro Realtors Association.

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