Higher mortgage rates, along with elevated sales prices and a lack of housing inventory, have continued to impact market activity during the summer homebuying season. The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has remained above 6.5% since May, recently hitting a two-decade high in August, according to Freddie Mac. As a result, existing-home sales have continued to slow nationwide, dropping 2.2% month-over-month as of last measure, with sales down 16.6% compared to the same time last year, according to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR).
Closed Sales decreased 16.5 percent for existing homes but increased 2.8 percent for new homes. Pending Sales decreased 16.7 percent for existing homes but increased 25.8 percent for new homes. Inventory decreased 19.1 percent for existing homes and 4.4 percent for new homes.
The Median Sales Price was up 4.7 percent to $290,000 for existing homes but decreased 4.8 percent to $513,500 for new homes. Days on Market increased 29.4 percent for existing homes and 130.3 percent for new homes. Supply remained flat for existing homes but increased 5.7 percent for new homes.
Falling home sales have done little to cool home prices, however, which have continued to sit at record high levels nationally thanks to a limited supply of homes for sale. According to NAR, there were 1.11 million homes for sale heading into August, 14.6% fewer homes than the same period last year, for a 3.3 months’ supply at the current sales pace. The shortage of homes for sale has boosted competition for available properties and is driving sales prices higher, with NAR reporting a national median existing-home price of $406,700, a 1.9% increase from a year earlier.
*Information and stats courtesy of KCRAR and Heartland MLS.