Baton Rouge area homes sales rose 24 percent in October. Realtors were able to sell 650 homes for the month compared to 525 for October of 2011.

For the year, home sales are up a total of 15 percent.

The Advocate reports:

In the three major parishes within the local market:

East Baton Rouge Parish saw October home sales rise 26 percent to 363, with a dollar volume of $72.3 million. For the year, home sales are up 15 percent to 3,538 homes sold.

In Ascension Parish, home sales were down in October, falling slightly to 112 homes sold from 118 a year ago. Volume was $21.3 million. For the year, home sales in Ascension are up 13 percent to 1,246 home sold.

In Livingston Parish, October home sales were up 47 percent to 110 homes sold, with a dollar volume of $16.2 million. For the year, home sales in Livingston are up 13 percent at 1,093 homes sold.

Many factors contribute to the healthy real estate market. For example, the area's unemployment rate for September was at 6.2 percent. This is the lowest rate for the area since late 2009. Also, more recent college graduates are also staying close to Baton Rouge rather than migrating. Furthermore, the net-increase to people to the region is increasing.