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Richmond real estate is both up and down

What's the state of the local real estate market?

Well, that answer depends on if you're looking at it month-over-month versus year-over-year.

According to the latest figures from the Real Estate Board of Greater Vancouver, December sales of single detached houses and townhomes were down from the month prior.

House sales were down 18.3 per cent in December 2013 compared to November, though the median selling price was up more than 17 per cent.

Townhouse sales fell sharply, down 35 per cent in that same span, with the median selling price falling more than nine per cent.

Condo sales rose slightly, month-over-month, up 6.7 per cent, though the median price dropped a little more than four per cent.

But from a year-over-year perspective, December of 2013 was downright rosy.

House and condo sales more than doubled compared to December of 2012, with selling prices also edging higher, up 7.4 per cent and 3.8 per cent. Townhouse sales were also up more than 22 per cent, though the median selling prices slipped three per cent.

"Home sales quietly improved last year compared to 2012, although the volume of activity didn't compare to some of the record-breaking years we experienced over the last decade," said board president Sandra Wyant. "It was a year of stability for the Greater Vancouver housing market. Balanced conditions allowed home prices in the region to remain steady, with just a modest increase over the last 12 months."

Last year's home sale total ranked as the third-lowest annual total in the region in the last decade.

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