Home sales

Increase in sales of existing homes in November

Home sales in the United States increased in the penultimate month of the year.

Sales of existing homes rose 1.9% to 6.46 million seasonally adjusted units in November from the previous month, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). The number of sales is down 2% from the same month a year ago, when there was a surge in purchases fueled by pent-up demand from the COVID-19 pandemic. Results were lower than analysts’ expectations of a 3% month-over-month increase to 6.53 million units, according to Bloomberg consensus estimates.

Home buying continues to be strong in November,” Lawrence Yun, chief economist at NAR, said at a news conference releasing the new data, attributing the activity “to the continuous improvement of the market. labor (every month there is more job creation) “and the stock market even if there is volatility. Rising rents are also a factor, he added.

Year-to-date, existing home sales are up 10% from the same period last year, indicating that 2021 will be another strong year for the housing market.

The increase was not surprising given recent activity in pending home sales. “October’s 7.5% surge in pending home sales is expected to lead to a solid gain for November existing home sales (6.55 million vs. 6.34 million) as the former tend to outperform the latter. a month or two, “Deutsche Bank said in a study. note before the results.

The median price of existing homes for all housing types in November was $ 353,900, up 13.9% from November 2020 ($ 310,800), as prices rose in every region, with the highest rate of appreciation in the southern region.

The higher prices are attributed to the more expensive homes sold in the United States. NAR.

The share of first-time buyers fell to 26% in November, from 32% a year ago. “First-time homebuyers really have a hard time entering the market,” Yun said, adding that most of the sales come from existing homeowners who are moving out.

The total building stock at the end of November stood at 1.11 million units, down 9.8% from October and 13.3% from a year ago (1.28 million ). The unsold inventory stands at a supply of 2.1 months at the current pace of sales, down from the previous month and a year ago. This compares to a 2.3 month supply at the same time a year ago.

“To see how distorted supply and demand are, compare the numbers from November to two years earlier, before the pandemic. People bought 404,000 homes in November 2019 and 1.64 million homes were on the market. In November, 503,000 homes were sold, with only 1.11 million homes on the market. That is, in summary, why the median price has climbed 30.4% in two years, “Holden said. Lewis, housing and mortgage expert at NerdWallet, in a statement.

The market is still very tight when it comes to homes available for sale, Yun said. As more and more new listings hit the market, homes are “buying up quickly,” he added.

Homes typically remained on the market for 18 days in November, which equates to October, up from 21 days in November 2020. Eighty-three percent of homes sold in November 2021 had been on the market for less than a month. .

“The prospect of higher interest rates in 2022 hastens buyers’ decisions in an otherwise slower season. However, the low number of homes for sale remains the main challenge, confusing both existing homeowners looking for them. next home and first-time home buyers to them, “said George Ratiu, director of economic research for Realtor.com, in a report.” There are less than half the number of homes on the market now compared to two years ago. As we head into the December holidays and Americans get together for family celebrations, many sellers are likely to delay putting their property up for sale until the end of the day. next year, which further tightens the available supply. “

Amanda Fung is a writer at Yahoo Finance.

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