The Triangle housing market, which has been plagued by too many sellers and not enough buyers since the recession hit, is still waiting for signs of a turnaround this year.
There were 3,041 homes sold during the first three months of the year in Durham, Johnston, Orange and Wake counties, Triangle Multiple Listing Services data show.
That was down 8 percent from the same period a year ago. Showings for the quarter were down 20 percent and pending sales were off 30 percent.
The average days on the market for the homes that did sell rose from 102 days to 125 days.
Some declines in the year-over-year comparisons were expected due to the absence of federal tax credits, which expired last summer. But the first quarter sales, showings and pending sales were also below the same period in 2009.
They reflect a market where buyers’ remain firmly in control.
The Triangle now has a 13-month supply of homes on the market. That's the time it would take to deplete the inventory at the first-quarter pace of sales.
One good sign was that the Triangle has not experienced the spike in inventory early this year that many people feared.
The number of existing homes on the market in the first quarter was down 4 percent compared to a year ago. The number of new homes for sale was down 20 percent from a year ago and is now less than half what it was three years ago.