Temperatures are heating up, yet the U.S. housing market remains cooler than usual for this time of year due to a combination of low inventory and higher borrowing costs, which have restricted market activity going into the summer homebuying season. According to the latest data from the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), national existing-home sales climbed 0.2% from the previous month but were down 20.4% compared to the same time last year, as fluctuating mortgage rates and a near all-time low level of inventory continue to influence home sales.
New listings decreased by 17% for residential homes and 13.8% for townhouse/condo homes. Pending sales decreased by 10.6% for residential homes and 23.4% for townhouse/condo homes. Inventory decreased by 13.8% for residential homes and 7% for townhouse/condo homes.
Median sales price increased 3.7% to $311,100 for residential homes and 4.7% to $225,000 for townhouse/condo homes. Days on market increased 27.8% for residential homes and 38.9% for townhouse/condo homes. Months supply of inventory increased by 6.7% for residential homes and 25% for townhouse/condo homes.
Nationwide, total housing inventory increased by 3.8% from the previous month, for a 3-month’s supply at the current sales pace. The shortage of homes for sale has kept prices high for remaining buyers, with a national median sales price of $396,100 as of last measure, a 3.1% decline from the same time last year and the largest annual decrease since December 2011, according to NAR. As demand continues to outpace supply, properties are selling quickly, with the majority of homes listed for sale on the market for less than a month.