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June 2018 News

U.S. Real Estate Overview

Note: Data below from April, 2018 is the most recent from the National Association of Realtors.

Based on the most recent data from the National Association of Realtors® (NAR), sales of existing homes fell back in April following a two-month upward climb, and all four major regions had no gain in sales activity.
 
Nationally, total existing-home sales (completed transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops) dipped 2.5% to 5.46 million in in April, down from 5.60 million in March. Sales now sit 1.4% below the same time period last year, and have dropped year-over-year for two consecutive months.

NAR's chief economist, Lawrence Yun, indicated that punishingly low inventory levels resulted in an Aprils's existing homes sales slump. “The root cause of the underperforming sales activity in much of the country so far this year continues to be the utter lack of available listings on the market to meet the strong demand for buying a home,” Yun said. He added, “Realtors® say the healthy economy and job market are keeping buyers in the market for now even as they face rising mortgage rates. However, inventory shortages are even worse than in recent years, and home prices keep climbing above what many home shoppers are able to afford.”
 
The median existing-home price for all housing types in April was $257,900, up 5.3% from April 2017 ($245,000). March’s price increase marks the 74th straight month of year-over-year gains.
 
Total housing inventory in the U.S. grew 9.8% to 1.80 million existing homes available for sale. This is still 6.3% lower than one year ago (1.92 million) and it's fallen year-over-year for 35 straight months. Nationally, unsold inventory offers a four-month supply of homes at the current sales pace, a bit less than 4.2 months last year.
 
Nationally, properties remained on the market for 26 days in April, a reduction from 30 days in February and 29 days a year ago. Fifty-seven percent of April's home sales stayed on market less than a month.
 
Freddie Mac data shows the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage ticked up for the seventh consecutive month to 4.47% in April from 4.44% in March. The average commitment rate across 2017 was 3.99%.
 
First-time buyers drove 33% of U.S. sales in April, down from 34% a year ago. The annual share of first-time buyers across 2017 was 34%.

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