U.S. existing-home sales rose from a 13-year low, climbing 0.8% from the
previous month and breaking a five-month streak in which sales declined,
according to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). Despite the
increase, sales were down 7.3% compared to the same period last year, as
affordability challenges continue to hinder prospective buyers. Most of this
period’s closed sales went under contract in October, when mortgage rates
were at a two-decade high. With rates having dropped more than a full
percentage point since then, existing-home sales may continue to pick up in
the months ahead.
Closed Sales decreased 5.9 percent for existing homes and 17.7 percent for
new homes. Pending Sales increased 7.6 percent for existing homes and 25.0
percent for new homes. Inventory decreased 6.2 percent for existing homes
and 14.4 percent for new homes.
The Median Sales Price was up 6.4 percent to $266,000 for existing homes
but decreased 6.5 percent to $503,061 for new homes. Days on Market
increased 3.3 percent for existing homes and 54.9 percent for new homes.
Supply increased 7.7 percent for existing homes but increased 7.7 percent for
Low levels of inventory continue to impact U.S. home sales, offering few
options for aspiring buyers to choose from. Going into December there were
1.13 million units for sale, down 1.7% from the previous month but up 0.9%
from the same period last year, for a 3.5 months’ supply at the current sales
pace. As a result, sales prices remain high nationwide, with NAR reporting the
median existing-home price rose 4% annually to $387,600 as of last measure,
the fifth consecutive month of year-over-year price gains. Homebuyer
demand is picking up, and without a significant increase in supply, experts
believe home prices will likely remain elevated for some time to come.
*Information and stats courtesy of KCRAR and Heartland MLS.