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PHILADELPHIA REPORTS RISE IN MAY HOME SALES, BUCKING NORTHEAST TREND

 PHILADELPHIA, July 7 /PRNewswire/ -- The National Association of REALTORS(R) (NAR) recently reported that sales of previously owned homes picked up in May due to buyers continuing to take advantage of low mortgage rates and stable prices.
 NAR also reported that the only regional resale decline was posted in the Northeast, where the sales rate of existing single-family homes was 500,000 in May, which was down 3.8 percent from one year earlier.
 However, the Philadelphia Board of REALTORS(R) (PBR) reports that existing home sales in May for Philadelphia have in fact risen by almost 2 percent over May 1992 sales.
 "This figure is significant," said PBR President Kelly Wolfington. "It is proof that the Philadelphia real estate market has stabilized. Despite the continued downward trend of the real estate industry in other cities in the Northeast Region, consumers have spoken and told us that Philadelphia is a viable place in which to live and invest for their future."
 NAR President William S. Chee noted that the increase in activity goes hand-in-hand with an overall improvement in the nation's economic growth. Also, in general, summer is the house-hunting period for families eager to get settled before school starts.
 "Today's low mortgage rates are permitting people to get more house for their money," Chee added. "In some instances, buyers can move up to a larger home, using a larger loan, without seeing an increase in their mortgage rates."
 An ample supply of affordable housing resulted in strong year-to-year sales increases for both the Midwest and South. In the Midwest, the resale pace jumped 6.5 percent from May 1992. Despite weak economic conditions in California, home resales in the West rose from one year earlier. Except for Philadelphia, the Northeast Region suffered a 3.8 percent decline in sales of existing homes when compared to May of 1992.
 /delval/
 -0- 7/7/93
 /Editors: NAR Existing Home Sales Statistics are available from the Philadelphia Board of REALTORS, 215-732-5980./
 /CONTACT: Laura J. Jordan of the Don Fair Company, 215-664-4141, for the Philadelphia Board of REALTORS/


CO: National Association of REALTORS; Philadelphia Board of REALTORS ST: Pennsylvania IN: SU: ECO

MK-JM -- PH009 -- 9001 07/07/93 10:24 EDT
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Date:Jul 7, 1993
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