August 24, 2014

Existing-home sales up in July

Aug. 22, 2014 – Existing-home sales increased by 2.4 percent in July, but are still down year-over-year and are expected to remain lower than in 2013 due to a sluggish first quarter.

NAFCU Staff Economist Doug Christman analyzed data from the National Association of Realtors for a Macro Data Flash, and found that year-over-year existing-home sales were down 4.3 percent.

"While sales have improved significantly since the beginning of the year, overall sales are still down on a year-over-year basis," Christman wrote. "Inventories continued to increase in July, but the months of supply remained unchanged. Improvements in the labor market and inventory conditions continue to help existing home sales strengthen. The new FICO credit score calculation should help buyers keep borrowing costs low and improve access to homeownership."

Existing-home sales reached an annualized 5.15 million units in July, with the South increasing the most at 3.4 percent. The South was also the only region to see a year-over-year increase with 0.5 percent sales growth, while the Northeast had the largest decrease of 9.9 percent over the year.

The median existing-home price increased from a revised $222,000 in June to $222,900, not seasonally adjusted, in July – which is up from $212,400 a year ago.