December 14, 2017

Existing-Home Sales Hit a 3-Year High

The National Association of Realtors said on Wednesday that existing-home sales had advanced 0.6 percent to an annual rate of 4.97 million units, the highest level since November 2009. The data underscored the housing market’s improving fortunes as it starts to regain its footing. Resales were 9.7 percent higher than in the same period last year.

“It’s quite supportive of the overall economy,” said Michelle Meyer, a senior economist at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in New York. “It’s a cushion against some of the other concerns in the economy.”

Tight supplies in some parts of the country have constrained the pace of home sales, but sellers are starting to wade back into the market, attracted by rising prices.

In April, the median home sales price increased 11 percent from a year ago to $192,800, the highest level since August 2008. It was the fifth consecutive month of double-digit gains.

With prices rising, more sellers put their properties on the market. The inventory of homes on the market rose 11.9 percent from March to 2.16 million.

Adding to signs that the housing recovery was becoming firmly established, distressed properties, which can weigh on prices because they typically sell at deep discounts, accounted for only 18 percent of sales last month.

That was the lowest since the real estate association started monitoring them in October 2008. Those properties — foreclosures and short sales — made up 21 percent of sales in March.

In another bright sign, properties were selling more quickly. The median time on the market for homes was 46 days in April, down from 62 days the previous month.

About 44 percent of all homes sold in April had been on the market for less than a month, while only 8 percent had been on the market for a year or longer.

Sales were up in three of the four regions, falling 3.4 percent in the Midwest.

Article source: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/23/business/economy/existing-home-sales-at-highest-level-in-3-years.html?partner=rss&emc=rss

Speak Your Mind