SOUTHFIELD (WWJ) – Across the nation, sales of new homes fell to a six-month low in August.  But Michigan is defying the national downturn.

Here, home sales of single family homes, including foreclosures, are reported to be up by more than 16 percent since last August.

Michael Stoskoph, CEO of the Building Industry Association of Southeast Michigan, said while things are looking up, it’s still no picnic out there for home buyers.

“The pendulum is still swung way over to the other side for what you need for a down payment,” he said.  “Then, even if you find a willing seller and a willing buyer, you still need that last step of, I’ll call it a willing appraiser, to give you what is the true market value.”

Stoskoph said this market is creating more cash sales.

“In part because folks can’t get the financing or they could get he financing but then the appraisal comes through and it’s at a different value than what the financing was going to be at, so they have to work on those numbers,” Stoskoph said.

Nationally, new-home sales fell 2.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 295,000 . That’s less than half the roughly 700,000 that economists say must be sold to sustain a healthy housing market.

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