Dr. Jay Butler of Realty Studies at Arizona State University came out with his Phoenix area residential real estate sales and median home price numbers for July 2010.

Greater Phoenix – Median Home Price

(Single-family resale homes. Excludes repossessions but includes sales by banks after they repossess. ASU calls these “Traditional Sales”)

July 2010: $137,500
July 2009: $135,500

The median price tanked in July falling $5,500 (-4%) from June ($143,000) to July ($137,500) as the effects of the $8,000 first-time home buyer tax credit program wore off.

(This suggests the tax credit program raised home prices. Without the program, home buyers would have saved thousands of dollars anyway due to lower prices and without costing the U.S. government a dime. Oh, well.)

The median home price in Maricopa County bottomed out in April 2009 at $125,000 and rose 15% to peak at $144,000 in April and May 2010.

Greater Phoenix – Number of Homes Sold

(Single-family resale homes. Excludes repossessions but includes sales by banks after they repossess. ASU calls these “Traditional Sales”)

July 2010: 5,080
July 2009: 7,300

The number of homes sold in metro Phoenix also tanked in July falling 26% from June (6,885) to July (5,080).

My comment from last month has played out, “July should be a cliff in the number of homes sold and I expect a big fade in the median price.

NOTE: Dr. Butler’s ASU data measures median home price. He doesn’t measure home price appreciation directly, although the median price follows appreciation very closely. Case-Shiller data, however, directly measures home price appreciation and depreciation. Dr. Guntermann at ASU uses the same technique as Case-Shiller but Dr. Guntermann breaks down the data further to look at appreciation in the major cities within metro Phoenix as well as metro Phoenix as a whole. Case-Shiller and Guntermann release their numbers 2 months after the end of a month while Butler releases his numbers 2 weeks after the end of a month.