ALBANY — Third quarter closed sales dropped 3.9 percent from a year ago to 38,072 units while median sales prices rose in New York State by 5.8 percent to $275,000 according to the housing market report released today by the New York State Association of REALTORS. This is the fourth straight quarter that sales prices have risen.

Mirroring the national housing market, pending sales were also down slightly by 0.8 percent from last year at this time. Inventory levels, one of the most closely followed housing statistics, shrank 2.5 percent this quarter from a year ago to 72,288 units. Days on market were also down 10.0 percent to 63 days. With declining supply, remaining properties have sold for higher prices and are spending less time on the market, thus indicating buyers are remaining active.

Year-to-date, there have been 96,898 closed sales in the Empire State, a slight decrease of 2.8 percent from 99,703 a year ago. New listings actually rose slightly compared to September of 2017, up 0.4 percent from 166,582 units to 167,269 units.

In Steuben County, numbers mirrored the statewide trend, with closed sales dropping, but prices inversely rising. Closed sales were down nearly 20 percent over the September 2017, declining from 73 to 59.

New listing outpaced statewide figures (-0.1 percent), rising 9.9 percent in September.

Median sale prices rose $16,700 over last September, but did not represent a radical departure versus prices for the third quarter. Stable home prices may have been bolstered by the dwindling number of homes for sale, declining 11.2 percent that contributed to a dip the months supply. If homes sold at this pace, with no new listings added, the supply would be gone in 6.4 months, down 13.5 percent from 7.4 months.

In Allegany County, the trend of declining home sales was bucked, as September 2018 saw two more sales than the previous year. But, like most of the state, median sales prices were up sharply, rising $18,200 or 25.5 percent, according to the report. The sales cut into the number of homes remaining on the market slightly, down 2.5 percent from last year.

Local figures for September were largely ordinary, in line with wider-view third quarter trends as well. In the fourth quarter, real estate professionals expect a seasonal slowdown featuring fewer new listings and homes on the market longer as demand wanes.