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Billings Residential Market Picking Up

The Billings residential housing market has picked up in the past year. According to the Billings Association of Realtors Multiple Listing Service statistics, the housing market in Billings has improved in the past year and has shown some interesting trends.

Home sales in Billings have increased $45 million from the period of June 1010 to June 2011 with a volume of $378 million, going to $423 million from June 2011 to June 2012. During the past year, the average price of all units dropped from $209,216 to $205,806. More specifically, the average price a year ago of 2-BR dropped from $152,254 to $151,836, 3-BR dropped from $191,271 to $187,970, 4-BR dropped from $248,793 to $242,425 and the average Condo dropped from $142,924 to $137,536.

Total units sold during that period went from 1,795 to 2,052, an increase of 257 homes closed. Interestingly, with the lower average home price this past year, homes put on the market that sold within the first 30 days increased from 630 sales to 780.

Financing methods have changed somewhat from the year ended June 2011 to year ended June 2012. Cash transactions increased from 285 to 312 during that period, FHA financing dropped from 544 transactions to 519 during the same period, while VA went from 121 transactions to 167. Conventional loans were the most used financing method during those periods, increasing from 723 transactions for the year ended in June 2011 to 883 transactions for the period ended in June 2012.

The housing market in Billings has improved with the new home construction picking up considerably in all areas of the city. The challenges for buyers are with the financing which requires stellar credit, steady income sources and in the case of conventional financing, 20% cash down payment. The real advantage in purchasing a home in Billings is because of the community. This is the “Magic City, Montana’s Trailhead,” truly, “The Last Best Place!”

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