NAR: Existing-home sales tick higher in May 

by John Yellig

Existing-home sales inched higher in May as limited inventory kept the pace of transactions relatively slow, despite high demand, the National Association of REALTORS® announced.      

“Newly constructed homes are selling at a pace reminiscent of pre-pandemic times because of abundant inventory in that sector,” NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said in a press release. “However, existing-home sales activity is down sizably due to the current supply being roughly half the level of 2019.” 

Specifically, existing-home sales rose 0.2% from April to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.3 million. Year-over-year, sales were down 20.4% from 5.4 million in May 2022.  

The median existing-home price for all housing types in May slid 3.1% year over year to $396,100. The median price rose in the Northeast and Midwest but fell in the South and West.  

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 6.69% as of June 15, down from 6.71% a week before but up from 5.78% a year earlier, according to Freddie Mac.  

Total housing inventory at the end of May was 1.08 million units, up 3.8% from April and down 6.1% on a year-over-year basis. At the current sales pace, unsold inventory represented a 3-month supply, up from 2.9 months in April and 2.6 months in May 2022.         

Properties typically remained on the market for 18 days in May, down from 22 days in April but up from 16 in May 2022. Seventy-four percent of homes sold in May were on the market for less than a month.    

By property type, single-family home sales in May slid 0.3% month over month to 3.85 million. The median existing single-family home price was $401,100, down 3.4% on a year-over-year basis.                

Existing condominium and co-op sales increased 4.7% month over month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 500,000 units in May, which was 23.7% lower than the May 2022 rate. The median existing condo price was $353,000, virtually flat with the year-ago price of $353,100.       

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