U.S. sales of existing homes recently fell to a 13-year low, dropping 2.0% month-over-month and 15.4% year-over-year as of last measure, according to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), as surging interest rates and elevated sales prices continue to make homeownership unaffordable for many prospective buyers. Purchase activity is down significantly compared to this time last year, but rising interest rates are also keeping many current homeowners from selling, causing inventory to remain at historically low levels nationwide.
New Listings were up 22.9 percent to 778. Pending Sales increased 1.6 percent to 441. Inventory grew 14.5 percent to 1,766 units.
Prices moved higher as Median Sales Price was up 4.5 percent to $290,000. Days on Market increased 3.8 percent to 55 days. Months Supply of Inventory was up 20.0 percent to 3.6 months, indicating that supply increased relative to demand.
Total housing inventory going into October was at 1.13 million units, up 2.7% from the previous month but down 8.1% compared to the same time last year, for a 3.4 months’ supply at the current sales pace, according to NAR. The shortage of homes for sale is making it harder for buyers to find a home to purchase while at the same time pushing sales prices higher nationwide, with the median existing-home sales price rising 2.8% annually to $394,300, the third consecutive month of year-over year price increases.
Housing Supply Overview
U.S. sales of new residential homes continue to soar, rising 12.3% from the previous month to an annual rate of 759,000, according to the Census Bureau, with sales up 33.9% compared to the same period last year. The latest reading surpassed economists’ expectations for the month and marks the highest level of new-home sales since February 2022, as homebuilders continue to benefit from limited existing-home inventory, which remains at historically low levels nationwide. For the 12-month period spanning November 2022 through October 2023, Pending Sales in the Western Upstate Association of REALTORS® region decreased 3.5 percent overall. The price range with the largest pending sales gain was the $250,001 to $350,000 range, where sales improved 17.0 percent.
The overall Median Sales Price improved 8.8 percent to $288,300. The property type with the largest gain was the Single-Family Homes segment, where prices went up 8.0 percent to $294,900. The price range that tended to sell the quickest was the $150,000 and Below range at 53 days. The price range that tended to sell the slowest was the $1,000,001 and Above range at 79 days.
Market-wide, inventory levels went up 14.5 percent. The property type with the largest gain was the Single-Family Homes segment, where the number of properties for sale improved 15.2 percent. That amounts to 3.5 months of inventory for Single-Family Homes and 3.1 months of inventory for Condos.
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