Existing-home sales decline in June

July 22, 2013


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Existing-home sales declined in June from May but remain well above June 2012 levels, the National Association of Realtors reported. In addition, the median home price has now posted its seventh straight month of double-digit year-over-year increases, NAR said.

Sales of existing homes were down 1.2% in June from May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.08 million, but sales were up 15.2% from June 2012. Existing-home sales are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops.

Higher interest rates won’t stop the market’s momentum nationwide, said Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist “Affordability conditions remain favorable in most of the country, and we’re still dealing with a large pent-up demand,” Yun said. “However, higher mortgage interest rates will bite into high-cost regions of California, Hawaii and the New York City metro area market.” According to Freddie Mac, the national average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage rose to 4.07% in June from 3.54% in May and is the highest since October 2011.

Total housing inventory at the end of June rose 1.9% to 2.19 million existing homes available for sale, representing a 5.2-month supply at the current sales pace. Listed inventory remains 7.6% below a year ago, when there was a 6.4-month supply. “Inventory conditions will continue to broadly favor sellers and contribute to above-normal price growth,” Yun said.

The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $214,200 in June, up 13.5% from June 2012, marking 16 consecutive months of year-over-year price increases. That last occurred in the period February 2005 to May 2006.

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