Orange County home sales generated more than $8 billion this year so far, the highest home-sales tally since 2006, figures from the California Regional Multiple Listing Service show.

That’s up by $1.9 billion from the same January-through-May period in 2012, adding about $111 million in commissions paid to real estate brokers.

This year’s sales rivals the amounts raised during the height of the housing boom. MLS figures show that home sales generated $10.3 billion in the first five months of 2005 and $8.7 billion in the same period of 2006. Sales dollars fell to an average of $5.8 billion in that five-month period during the crash, 2007-12.

In May alone, home sales revenue totaled $2.1 billion, up $542 million, or 34 percent, from May 2012. It was the highest May tally since 2005 — exceeding the total in May 2006.

Higher sales and even higher prices accounted for the increase.

The MLS reported that 12,525 homes changed hands during the first five months of the year, up 4.5 percent. But the average sales price jumped 24 percent this year so far, rising to $641,022.

This year’s sales tally equates to approximately $482 million in real estate agent commissions this year so far (assuming that the typical commission is plus or minus 6%). By comparison, real estate commissions totaled about $618 million in the five-month period in 2005, but fell to an average of $348 million during the crash.

$ell SmArt… with Art!