According to a report from the National Association of Realtors, the fall real estate market has strengthened with an increasing pace of existing home sales despite a struggle due to the deficit of available supply. The total existing home sales of single-families, townhomes, condos and co-ops has increased by 2.0% in the month of October to a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.48 million. After this increase sales are at their strongest pace since this June, but are still below last year at this time by 0.9%.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says sales activity in October picked up for the second straight month, with increases in all four major regions. “Job growth in most of the country continues to carry on at a robust level and is starting to slowly push up wages, which is in turn giving households added assurance that now is a good time to buy a home,” he said. “While the housing market gained a little more momentum last month, sales are still below year ago levels because low inventory is limiting choices for prospective buyers and keeping price growth elevated.”
Added Yun, “The residual effects on sales from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma are still seen in parts of Texas and Florida. However, sales should completely bounce back to their pre-storm levels by the end of the year, as demand for buying in these areas was very strong before the storms.”
The median existing home price for every property type was up by 5.5% this October over that of last year. This price increase is the 68th straight month of year-over-year gains.
Housing inventory by the end of October had decreased 3.2% and is now 10.4% lower than a year ago. This has also been the 29th consecutive month for decreasing amount of available housing levels. The total unsold inventory is at a 3.9 month supply currently which is down from 4.4 months at this time last year. Properties also stayed on the market for typically 34 days this October which is down from the 41 days from a year ago. Additionally, forty seven percent of the the homes sold in October were on the market for less than one month.