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March US existing home sales from the National Association of Realtors rose 6.01m vs 6.11m expected. Sales -3.7% m/m vs -1.8% expected (-6.6% prior) from an upwardly revised 6.24 million (from 6.22 million) in February. Notably pressure is coming from the supply of existing homes for sale remains near all-time low levels. This is creating affordability pressures for prospective buyers.

Home Sale 

Mortgage rates have risen from record low levels as the economy reopens from coronavirus-induced restrictions.

March 2021 US Existing Home Sales from the National Association of Realtors

After months of gains amid record-low interest rates and as people move away from the big cities as they have more flexible work arrangements due to the coronavirus pandemic we saw a sharp slow down with higher interest rates (though still very low historically. 

 United States Existing Home Sales

  • March US existing home sales rose 6.01m vs 6.11m expected. Prior was 6.22m (revised to 6.24)
  • Sales -3.7% m/m vs -1.8% expected (-6.6% prior)
  • Median home prices +17.2% y/y to $329,100
  • Total sales in March were up 12.3% from a year ago.

Median House Prices Record High

 united states median sales price of existing single family homes fed data

  • The pace of price increases well beyond the pace of income gains, which is going to create affordability pressures for prospective buyers along with rising mortgage rates.
  • The median existing home price for all housing types represents the 109th consecutive month of year-over-year gains and the highest on record.
  • The median price for single-family homes increased 18.4% yr/yr to $334,500, which was also a record high.
  • Existing home sales across regions:
  • Northeast (-1.3%); Midwest (-2.3%); South (-2.9%); and West (-8.0%).
  • Median home prices by region year-over-year:
  • Northeast (+21.4% to $364,800); Midwest (+13.5% yr/yr to $248,200); South (+15.6% to $283,900); and West (+16.8% to $493,300).
  • First-time buyers accounted for 32% of sales in March, up from 31% in February and down from 34% in March 2020.

Existing Home Sales Month Long Supply

Existing home sales account for 90% of US transactions and are calculated on a contract close basis. New home sales account for the remaining 10% and are based on contract signings.

  • Supply to 2.1 months from 2.0 months
  • The supply of existing homes for sale remains near all-time low levels.
  • The pace of price increases well beyond the pace of income gains, which is going to create affordability pressures for prospective buyers along with rising mortgage rates.
  • The inventory of homes for sale at the end of March was up 3.9% month over month at 1.07 million units, but down 28.2% from a year ago.
  • Unsold inventory stood at a 2.1-month supply at the current sales pace versus 3.3 months in March 2020. This is well below the 6.0-months' supply typically associated with a more balanced market.
  • 83% of homes sold in March were on the market for less than a month, with properties typically remaining on the market for 18 days -- a record low -- versus 20 days in February and 29 days in the same month a year ago. The big question is after the lockdown eases and the economy reopens how much damage has been done with the massive unemployment and wealth erosion.  

 united states existing home sales months supply fed data

Source: NAHB

From The TradersCommunity News Desk

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