Home Sales Plunge At Fastest Rate In 16 Months
It seems, despite the Fed's efforts to unscamble the treasury complex's eggs, that the rate shock of a taper/no-taper decision has become sticky in the housing market. With the fast money exiting, existing home sales missed expectations for the 4th month in a row - dropping to the lowest annualized number since June (very much against the trend in recent years). This is the biggest month-over-month drop in existing home sales since June 2012 but, of course, NAR has an excuse... "low inventory is holding back sales." So, in other words, they could sell loads more houses if only there were more available for sale (or prices were lower...)...
This is not a "seasonal" thing... and in fact is very much against the seasonals of the last few years...
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said a flattening trend is expected. “The erosion in buying power is dampening home sales,” he said. “Moreover, low inventory is holding back sales while at the same time pushing up home prices in most of the country. More new home construction is needed to help relieve the inventory pressure and moderate price gains.”
The median time on market for all homes was 54 days in October, up from 50 days in September, but well below the 71 days on market in October 2012. Short sales were on the market for a median of 93 days, while foreclosures typically sold in 46 days, and non-distressed homes took 53 days. Thirty-six percent of homes sold in October were on the market for less than a month.
Total housing inventory at the end of October declined 1.8 percent to 2.13 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 5.0-month supply at the current sales pace; the relative supply was 4.9 months in September. Unsold inventory is 0.9 percent above a year ago, when there was a 5.2-month supply.
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