Existing Homes Sales Drop 6.6% in February but Year-Over-Year are up 9.1%

The National Association of Realtors® (NAR) is reporting that total existing home sales — which are completed transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops — in February were -6.6% below January to a seasonally adjusted rate at 6.22 million homes. Year-over-year sales are up 9.1% (5.70 million in February 2020). At the end of February, unsold inventory was at a 2.0-month supply, at the current sales pace, up slightly from January’s rate of 1.9 months, but down year-over-year from the February 2020 rate of 3.1 months. The median existing-home price for all housing types in February was $313,000, up 15.8% from February 2020 ($270,400), as prices rose in every region. February’s national price jump marks 108 straight months of year-over-year gains. In prepared remarks for the release of the February’s NAR Existing Home Sales report, Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist said, “I still expect this year’s sales to be ahead of last year’s, and with more COVID-19 vaccinations being distributed and available to larger shares of the population, the nation is on the cusp of returning to a sense of normalcy. Many Americans have been saving money and there’s a strong possibility that once the country fully reopens, those reserves will be unleashed on the economy.” Yun went on to say that, “Home affordability is weakening. Various stimulus packages are expected and they will indeed help, but an increase in inventory is the best way to address surging home costs.”

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Existing-Home Sales Descend 6.6% in February