Home sales and prices up in August, national housing market continues to improve

As mortgage rates continue to dip near record low levels from earlier this year, more prospective buyers of real estate for sale in Los Angeles County have been making the investment and becoming homeowners.

A new report from the National Association of Realtors shows total existing-home sales increased 7.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.82 million transactions in August, up from July when 4.47 million homes, condos and townhomes sold. This is also 9.3 percent higher than this time last year, when 4.41 million properties were purchased.

Additionally, the median existing-home price for all housing types reached $187,000 in August, up 9.5 percent from a year ago. This marks the strongest increase in median prices since January 2006.

While higher home prices may not seem ideal to buyers, they are indicative of improving housing markets throughout the country. A lower inventory of delinquent properties has allowed prices to trend upward throughout much of 2012, and are expected to continue increasing, benefiting both buyers and sellers. Sales have likely been boosted while mortgage rates continue to linger near record lows, according to reports from Freddie Mac.

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