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Mass. Home Sales See Best Month Since 2006

BOSTON (AP) — July was the best month for sales of single-family homes in Massachusetts in years, two organizations that track the market said Thursday.

The 5,750 homes sold in the state last month was a more than 20 percent increase compared with the same month last year, the Massachusetts Association of Realtors announced. It was the fourth consecutive month of year-over-year increases and the most homes sold in one month since July 2004.

The Warren Group, a publisher of real estate data, reported an 18 percent increase in sales last month when compared with July 2012, and the highest volume of sales since June 2006.

"Many recent real estate reports have signaled a strong real estate recovery, and our numbers speak to that rebound," said David Harris, editorial director of The Warren Group.

The organizations make their calculations with slightly different figures.

"The combination of buyers wanting to close and move in before the start of the school year and their concern over increasing interest rates resulted in another positive month in July," Realtors President Kimberly Allard-Moccia said, adding that there remains a shortage of inventory on the market that prices out some buyers.

Both organizations reported an increase in median prices.

The Warren Group said median prices jumped 10 percent in July year-over year to $349,000, while the Realtors said median prices went up nearly 8 percent to $350,000.

Rising prices "could dampen the revitalized market," Harris said.

The volume of condominium sales and median prices also increased in July when compared to the year-ago month, according to both groups.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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