Home sales rebound, while prices continue to climb

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According to a report from the National Association of Realtors, housing inventory, which had been improving earlier this year, deteriorated again in September, and prices continued to climb.

Sales of existing homes increased by 7% per month in September, including single-family homes, townhouses, apartments and co-ops. However, due to the pandemic, home sales have seen an atypical surge, and sales have fallen by 2.3% from a year ago.

The median sale price of existing homes rose by 13.3% from last year to US$352,800, for 115 consecutive months or nine and a half years. The year-on-year price increase.

“Some improvements in supply in the first few months helped drive sales in September,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist at NAR. “Demand for housing remains strong, as buyers may want to acquire homes before mortgage rates rise further next year.”

The number of homes available for purchase at the end of September was 0.8% lower than in August and 13% lower than the same period last year. At the current sales rate, the inventory is 2.4 months of supply. A balanced market is approximately six months of housing supply.

Yun said that more inventory is expected to enter the market next year.

“With the end of the mortgage tolerance program, and as home builders increase production-despite supply chain material issues-we may see more homes listed in 2022,” Yun said.

Buying a house or refinancing? A 30-year mortgage may not be your best choice

Mike Flatantoni, chief economist and senior vice president of the Mortgage Bankers Association, said that sluggish inventory levels continue to limit the market. But he added that MBA still predicts that the annual growth rate of existing sales this year will reach 6.07 million, an increase of 7% over 2020.

“The increase in existing home sales in September reflects the contracts signed earlier in the summer,” he said. “The MBA’s house purchase application data shows that there was an increase of 8% in September, which shows that the demand for house purchases is growing and supports further sales growth in the coming months.”

According to the NAR report, the market was still fast in September, with properties usually staying on the market for 17 days. This is the same as in August and a decrease from 21 days a year ago.

What is my monthly mortgage payment?
As interest rates climb, rising prices and low inventories continue to hurt first-time home buyers. The purchase share of first-time home buyers fell again in September, from 31% last year to 28%.

“First-time homebuyers have been hit particularly hard by historically high house prices, because they basically don’t have the savings or equity needed to buy a home to offset this purchase,” Yun said.


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