WASHINGTON — Sales of previously occupied homes plunged last month to the lowest level in 15 years, despite the lowest mortgage rates in decades and bargain prices in many areas.
July’s sales fell by more than 27 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.83 million, the National Association of Realtors said Tuesday.
It was the largest monthly drop on records dating back to 1968, and sharp declines were recorded in all regions of the country.
The plunge in home sales also magnified fears about the broader economy.Sales in Middle Georgia fell 41.7 percent from June to July, said Dale Washburn, principal broker with Washburn & Associates.
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The region includes Bibb, Jones, Monroe, Twiggs and several other counties.Washburn said the drop in July is probably a reflection of the ending of the federal homebuyer tax credit programs.
“We did have a flurry of activity that was driven at least to some degree by the tax credit programs. Most of those transactions closed by the end of June,” Washburn said. “Certainly there were transactions going on that were not driven by the tax credit programs, but there were a lot of people trying to get those done and get them closed by the deadline.”
Telegraph staff writer Rodney Manley contributed to this report.