Existing-Home Sales Retreated in July

Existing-home sales sagged for the sixth straight month in July, according to the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR). All four major U.S. regions recorded month-over-month and year-over-year sales declines.

Total existing-home sales, completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums, and co-ops, slipped 5.9 percent from June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.81 million in July. Year-over-year, sales fell 20.2 percent (6.03 million in July 2021).

“The ongoing sales decline reflects the impact of the mortgage rate peak of 6 percent in early June,” said NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun. “Home sales may soon stabilize since mortgage rates have fallen to near 5 percent, thereby giving an additional boost of purchasing power to home buyers.”

Total housing inventory registered at the end of July was 1,310,000 units, an increase of 4.8 percent from June and unchanged from the previous year. Unsold inventory sits at a 3.3-month supply at the current sales pace, up from 2.9 months in June and 2.6 months in July 2021.

The median existing-home price for all housing types in July was $403,800, up 10.8 percent from July 2021 ($364,600), as prices increased in all regions. This marks 125 consecutive months of year-over-year increases, the longest-running streak on record.

“We’re witnessing a housing recession in terms of declining home sales and home building,” Yun added. “However, it’s not a recession in home prices. Inventory remains tight and prices continue to rise nationally with nearly 40 percent of homes still commanding the full list price.”

Properties typically remained on the market for 14 days in July, the same as in June and down from 17 days in July 2021. The 14 days on market are the fewest since NAR began tracking it in May 2011. Eighty-two percent of homes sold in July 2022 were on the market for less than a month.

Existing-home sales in the Northeast slid to an annual rate of 620,000 in July, down 7.5 percent from June and 16.2 percent from July 2021. The median price in the Northeast was $444,000, an increase of 8.1 percent from the previous year.

Existing-home sales in the Midwest declined 3.3 percent from the prior month to an annual rate of 1,190,000 in July, dropping 14.4 percent from July 2021. The median price in the Midwest was $293,300, up 7 percent from the previous year.

Existing-home sales in the South waned 5.3 percent in July to an annual rate of 2,130,000, down 19.6 percent from one year ago. The median price in the South was $365,200, an increase of 14.7 percent from July 2021.

Existing-home sales in the West retracted 9.4 percent compared to last month to an annual rate of 870,000 in July, down 30.4 percent from this time last year. The median price in the West was $614,900, an 8.1 percent jump from July 2021.

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