Local home sales showed more signs of improving last month, with the industry reporting its best December in five years.

The Charleston Trident Association of Realtors said today that 785 homes were sold at a median price of $186,050 to close out 2011. Volume was up about 15 percent for the month while prices slipped 2 percent compared to the December 2010.

The group projected the three-county region will close out 2011 with at least a 6 percent gain in closed sales for the year and a drop in overall prices of about 3 percent, which was attributed to foreclosed homes and other so-called distressed properties.

In all of 2011, it is projected that 9,276 residences changed hands at a median price of $181,573. In 2010, 8,767 homes were sold at a median price of $186,423.

The association also revised its November sales figures higher. The adjusted numbers show 663 residential transactions at median price of $195,000 for the month.

The numbers are based on homes sold through the association's Multiple Listing Service.

See Thursday's editions of The Post and Courier for more details.