The positive recent news for existing-home sales is predicted to last through the whole year, closing out 2016 as the best year in a decade, according to an economic forecast forum at the 2016 Realtors Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo.

Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of Realtors, forecasts existing sales to finish 2016 at a pace of around 5.40 million – the best year since 2006 (6.48 million).

“The housing market continues to expand at a moderate pace in spite of the fact that home prices are rising too fast in some areas because of insufficient supply fueled by the grossly inadequate number of new single-family homes being constructed,” said Yun.

“The good news is that pending sales in recent months have remained stable and should support a modest gain in home sales heading into the summer.” 

The latest pending-home sales report stated that sales managed to increase in March for the second consecutive month, reaching its highest level in almost a year.

At the time, Yun said that the month’s pending sales increase signaled a solid beginning to the spring buying season.

After accelerating to 6.8% in 2015, Yun predicts that the national median existing-home price will fall between 4% and 5% this year.

As it stands, potential homebuyers are still basking in historically low interest rates, with mortgage rates dropping to their lowest point in three years.

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