Optimism is a good thing. Not as much so when the real numbers tell another story.
The NAR (National Association of Realtors) reported that existing home sales were up 14.5% month-over-month for February 2023. What appears to be a surge for the real estate market is anything but, as year-over-year EHS are down 22.6%.
For the first time in 11 years, the median price of homes went down, breaking a streak of 131 consecutive months of year-over-year price increases for existing homes. Inventory levels, while still dangerously low, are inching upward. A healthy real estate market tends to have about six months of inventory; February’s housing inventory number came in at 2.6 months. This is a needed improvement over February 2022’s 1.7 months of inventory.
“Conscious of changing mortgage rates, home buyers are taking advantage of any rate declines. Moreover, we’re seeing stronger sales gains in areas where home prices are decreasing and the local economies are adding jobs. Inventory levels are still at historic lows. Consequently, multiple offers are returning on a good number of properties.”
NAR Chief Economist
Read the full release at NAR.realtor:
Existing-Home Sales Surged 14.5% in February, Ending 12-Month Streak of Declines