The October sales figures are out now from the Knoxville Area Association of  Realtors. The total for October was 1,023 for the month which was 149 more than the same time period in 2008.

That’s a 14.5% increase year over year but the most exciting part is that increase came at a time of year when sales have been historically dipping toward the winter lows. I believe the first time home buyers tax credit is continuing to prop up our market.

Here’s an easy to understand at a glance graph of the past 5 years sales including year to date in 2009.

5 year sales comparison

5 year sales comparison

Unfortunately tight money remains the proverbial ‘elephant in the living room’ .

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke gave a speech Monday and opened with this scary statement: “The flow of credit remains constrained, economic activity weak, and unemployment much too high. Future setbacks are possible.”

He’s right though, credit, especially mortgages are still very tough for the average borrower to get, consumer confidence is close to rock bottom, and unemployment is still very high. None of these factors are good news for the housing sector.

I hope everyone enjoys a great Thanksgiving holiday next week.

If you’ve eaten all the turkey and want to surf for some houses, is a great choice.