GLOVERSVILLE - Tim and Judy Pritchard have been trying to sell their South Shore Road home on Peck's Lake for nearly a year and a half.
The Pritchards have reduced the price of the four-bedroom, three-bath home advertised as being on the "pristine shoreline of Peck Lake" by $100,000, to an asking price of $568,000.
"People who we have shown it to, as they come walking through that front door, as soon as they look out at the lake, they say 'Wow.' We haven't had anyone who's looked at the house say [they don't like something]," Tim Pritchard said.
Still, the Pritchards have been unable to sell the home, and they're not alone. Real estate experts say local housing sales, as in many other areas of the country, are challenging.
Data from the Fulton County Board of Realtors show 161 single-family homes its member real-estate agencies had on the market were sold from Jan. 1 to Aug. 1 in Fulton, Montgomery and Hamilton counties. The number represents 32 percent of the 508 active listings.
All of last year, 251 single-family homes were sold in the three counties, or 49 percent of active listings. In 2010, 268 homes were sold, or 52 percent.
Some data may show signs of improvement, however.
According to the New York State Association of Realtors, the number of closed housing sales in Fulton County was up 35.5 percent in the second quarter of this year over the second quarter of 2011. The median price of homes was up 7.5 percent.
Statewide, the number of closed housing sales was up 6.7 percent in the second quarter.
According to the Fulton County Board of Realtors, the average price in the first seven months of this year was $129,000 in Fulton, Montgomery and Hamilton counties. That number compares with $122,000 in 2011 and $123,000 in 2010.
"There are a lot of people who owe more than they can sell the house for. ... A bulk of people are in that situation," said Brent Phetteplace of Judith Ann Reality. "You meet a person who wants to sell their home with an emotion attached with what they want to get, but, unfortunately, their house isn't worth what they're asking for."
According to real estate broker Christian Klueg of CMK and Associates, the selling rate has fallen by almost 60 percent since 2005.
Klueg said he expects the rate of sales to remain around 30 percent to 35 percent for the near future.
"I expect to see a flat line," Klueg said. "Let's say the rate goes up to 40 percent. Although 40 percent is better than it was, it's a far, far, far cry from the 90 percent it was in 2005.
"And I'm not trying to be pessimistic. I'm trying to be optimistic, because things are getting better. But a lot of people are only seeing a very small increase in demand and automatically expect to see this rate of increase for the next 10 years."
The National Association of Realtors reported in July that nationwide sales of previously owned homes fell 5.4 percent in June to an eight-month low. Meanwhile, the Commerce Department said sales of new homes fell 8.4 percent in June from May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 350,000. That's the biggest drop since February 2011.
Albany native Jim Pritchard said he hopes more potential buyers will look at his house on Peck's Lake.
"People can't actually appreciate it unless they actually see it. ... It's just getting it into the right hands, [and] it's just frustrating that we can't get more people here," he said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.