June Existing Home Sales Fall 1.7%

US existing-homes sales (EHS) fell 1.7% in June versus the year prior, to a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.27M units. However, median home prices continue to rise, up 4.3% over the same period.

June’s price increase in the U.S. housing market is the 88th consecutive month of year-over-year gains. The median home transaction rose to $285,700.

Market inventory continues to recover, albeit at a slow rate. The 4.4-month supply of housing inventory is a far cry from the 6-month standard for a balanced housing market, though this is a year-over-year improvement from June 2018’s 4.3-month supply.

NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun summarized the mixed market, noting that the US is still mired in a housing shortage with much more inventory needed.

“Home sales are running at a pace similar to 2015 levels – even with exceptionally low mortgage rates, a record number of jobs, and a record high net worth in the country. Imbalance persists for mid-to-lower priced homes with solid demand and insufficient supply, which is consequently pushing up home prices. Either a strong pent-up demand will show in the upcoming months, or there is a lack of confidence that is keeping buyers from this major expenditure.”

First-time buyers were responsible for 35% of home sales in June, a significant increase of 4 points over last June’s 31%. Another silver lining in the data is the fact that mid-range priced homes ($250K to $500K) were up year-over-year, while sales of existing homes at either end of the price spectrum lagged.

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Existing-Home Sales Falter 1.7% in June | www.nar.realtor

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