US Existing-Home Sales Market Slows in January as Mortgage Rates Hold Steady

On Friday, Redfin reported that according to its data, new listings dropped 1.2% month-over-month in January (seasonally adjusted). This marks the first decline in new listings since June 2023. Year-over-year, listings were up 2.7%, but Redfin notes that is a deceleration from December’s 4.2% gain.

Active listings—the total number of homes for sale—fell 0.3% from a month earlier on a seasonally adjusted basis. This is the first decline in six months and down 4.4 year-over-year.

Redfin points to stagnant mortgage rates as the main reason that slowed the housing market in January. They started and ended January at 6.6%—unexciting news after buyers and sellers at the end of last year watched rates drop the most since 2008. Homeowners are hesitant to sell because a majority of them still have mortgage rates below current levels, and selling often means taking on a higher rate.

According to Redfin, another setback for housing was the median US home sale price climbing 5.2% year-over-year to $402,343 in January. This marks the biggest jump since September 2022. Prices were little changed from a month earlier, down only 0.01%. (Home price data is not seasonally adjusted, which is why Redfin focuses on year-over-year changes for this metric.)

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