Metro seeing some economic uptick, small towns still struggling

Updated: 07/21/2014 5:34 PM | Created: 07/21/2014 5:02 PM
By: Stuart Dyson, KOB Eyewitness News 4

New Mexico’s anemic economy is showing a few signs of recovery from what some call a “double-dip” recession.

Home sales statewide are up, and so are home prices.

There were 1,488 home sales across the state in June, after earlier increases in April and May.

It’s an increase of 3.6 percent over June of last year. More than half of those sales – 800 – were in the greater Albuquerque metro area, and realtors say Santa Fe and Las Cruces had a healthy June, but in the smaller cities and towns it’s still a pretty sad story.

“Like Raton, where I’m from, they’re still struggling,” said Sandylee Pasquale of Pasquale Realty in Albuquerque and president of the REALTORS Association of New Mexico. “Why? It’s jobs. It’s all about jobs. There are jobs in your major metropolitan areas, it’s kind of picking up there a little bit. But in the smaller communities, they’re still struggling for jobs.”

Pasquale says right now there is good news for buyers – inventories are up in Albuquerque and the larger towns.

That means more to choose from and competitive prices, if the seller is truly motivated.

The median price of a New Mexico home was $180,000 in June, up .7 percent from a year ago – a sign of a healthier economy but not enough of a hike to scare away buyers.

More good news – interest rates are still low and holding pretty steady.

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