New-home sales dropped an estimated 14.2 percent in 2010, falling to 321,000 compared to 375,000 in 2009, the U.S. Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development reported today.

The seasonally adjusted annual sales rate for new, single-family homes was 329,000 in December 2010, the agencies also reported, which was up an estimated 17.5 percent compared to the previous month but down an estimated 7.6 percent from its December 2009 rate.

The median sales price of new, single-family homes was $241,500 in December 2010, the agencies reported, up about 8.5 percent compared to $222,600 in December 2009.

Last week, the National Association of Realtors reported that sales of existing homes fell about 4.8 percent in 2010, to an estimated 4.91 million sales.

Regionally, the new-home sales rate rose an estimated 71.9 percent in the West, 3.2 percent in the Midwest, and 1.8 percent in the South while falling 5 percent in the Northeast from November 2010 to December 2010, according to Census and HUD statistics.

Year-over-year in December, the sales rate jumped 32.5 percent in the West while falling 50 percent in the Northeast, 37.3 percent in the Midwest and 8.7 percent in the South.

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