Existing Home Sales Drop 5.1% in June as ‘Spring Surge’ Slows: NAR
Existing home sales fell 5.1% in June after a 2.2% drop in May, according to a report from the National Association of Realtors. The June numbers mark the second straight month of declines after the homebuyer tax credit expired April 30. Lawrence Yun, chief economist at NAR, said the June home sales still reflect some activity spurred by the tax credit, as some sales from that time have yet to close. Congress passed an extension of the closing date for the tax credit to Sept. 30. In June, there were 5.37m units sold, down from 5.6m in May. That includes single-family, town homes, condominiums, and co-ops. The sales are 9.8% higher than the 4.89m reported in June of last year. “Broadly speaking, sales closed after the home buyer tax credit will be significantly lower compared to the credit-induced spring surge. Only when jobs are created at a sufficient pace will home sales return to sustainable healthy levels,” Yun said. The national median existing-home price reached $183,700 in June, a 1% increase from last year and up 2.2% from $179,600 in May. Distressed home sales made up 32% of all sales in June, compared to 31% in May. First-time homebuyers purchased 43% of the homes in June, down from 46% in May. Investors took 13% of sales, down from 14% in May, and repeat buyers took the rest. The total housing inventory climbed 2.5% from May to 3.9m existing homes still set to sell. It represents a 8.9-month supply at the current sales pace, according to NAR. Broken down by category, there were 4.7m single-family home sales in June, down 5.6% from May but still 8.5% above last year. There were 670,000 condominium and co-op sales, down 1.5% from May but 20.5% higher than last year. Existing home sales in the Northeast climbed 7.9% from May to 960,000 sales in June. The median price in the Northeast was $244,300, down 1.2% a year ago. Sales in the Midwest reached 1.23m, a 7.5% drop from May but 11.8% higher than last year. The median price was $155,900, down 0.1% from a year ago. There were 2m sales in the South, down 6.5% from May but 11% above levels seen a year ago. The median sales price was unchanged from a year ago at $163,600. Existing home sales in the West fell 9.3% from May to 1.17m in June, which is 0.9% higher than a year ago. The median price in the West was $221,800, up 1.5% from last year. Write to Jon Prior.