Today’s news:

Price tags for new houses rise, sales drop

The average Brooklyn home price inched up three percent to $627,324 in the first quarter of 2008, despite a 15 percent decline in sales volume, according to a study by Brooklyn-based real estate consulting and appraisal firm HMS Associates.

While the overall average home price rose from $609,368 for the same period last year to $627,324 in the first quarter of 2008, neighborhood by neighborhood the report showed a mixed bag of price increases and reductions. Average home prices rose in Williamsburg, Brooklyn Heights, Carroll Gardens, Fort Greene and Bay Ridge but fell in Park Slope, Boerum Hill, Greenpoint and Clinton Hill. The price gains or losses also varied for condos and coops versus single- and multi-family homes.

The report includes sales of single- and multi-family homes, condos and coops in 16 representative neighborhoods of Brooklyn. The figure reported for the first quarter of 2007 varies slightly from what HMS had reported last year because the firm began to incorporate coop prices into the report after the first quarter of 2007, said Sam Heskel, HMS’s executive vice president. HMS is an independent appraisal company and is not affiliated with any brokerage firms.

The report does not include neighborhoods where high turnover and a large volume of subprime mortgages are suspected

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