New single-family homes recorded a sharp uptick in January, running at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 543,000, according to the latest findings from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Builder Applications Survey.
“While the big jump may appear to conflict with other data, such as MBA’s purchase application index and NAR’s existing home sales data that point to a weak market for existing homes, our Builder Application Survey estimate is consistent with reports of homebuilder sentiment that show strength in the market for new homes,” said Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s chief economist.
“It is also worth noting that the significant January increase also followed a particularly slow pace of sales in November and December,” Fratantoni continued.
Meanwhile, the estimated 543,000 unit sales pace for January increased 35% from December’s pace of 402,000 units.
On an unadjusted basis, there were 38,000 new home sales in January, 36% higher than 28,000 units in December 2013.
In addition, mortgage applications for new home purchases increased 27% from December, not including any adjustment for typical seasonal patterns.
Individually, conventional loans composed 69.4% of loan applications, FHA loans composed 15.9%, RHS/USDA loans composed 1.3% and VA loans composed 13.4%.
The average loan size of new homes decreased from $300,444 in December to $289,358 in January.