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2014-06-24 16:41:18
U.S. Inventories of Homes for Sale Rising, Which B

U.S. Inventories of Homes for Sale Rising, Which Bodes Well for Affordability

Is housing coming out of its recent slump? Possibly.

U.S. home resales rose more than expected in May and the inventory of properties for sale was the highest in more than 1-1/2 years, according to the National Association of Realtors.

The NAR said Monday that toal home resales, which are completed transactions of single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 4.9 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.89 million in May. That’s from an upwardly-revised 4.66 million in April, but remain 5.0 percent below the 5.15 million-unit level in May 2013.

The 4.9 percent month-over-month gain in May was the highest monthly rise since August 2011 (5.5 percent).

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said current sales activity is rebounding after the lackluster first quarter.

“Home buyers are benefiting from slower price growth due to the much-needed, rising inventory levels seen since the beginning of the year,” he said. “Moreover, sales were helped by the improving job market and the temporary but slight decline in mortgage rates.”

Total housing inventory at the end of May climbed 2.2 percent to 2.28 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 5.6-month supply at the current sales pace, down slightly from 5.7 months in April.

Unsold inventory is 6.0 percent higher than a year ago, when there were 2.15 million existing homes available for sale.

The median existing-home price for all housing types in May was $213,400, which is 5.1 percent above May 2013.

“Rising inventory bodes well for slower price growth and greater affordability, but the amount of homes for sale is still modestly below a balanced market. Therefore, new home construction is still needed to keep prices and housing supply healthy in the long run,” Yun added.

Earlier this month, NAR reported new home construction activity is currently insufficient in most of the U.S., and some states could face persistent housing shortages and affordability issues unless housing starts increase to match up with local job creation.

Distressed homes4 – foreclosures and short sales – accounted for 11 percent of May sales, down from 18 percent in May 2013.


Read more at http://ecreditdaily.com/2014/06/inventories-homes-sale-rising-bodes-affordability/#X7tp6yA95YkR1QE0.99

 
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