Existing Home Sales Surge in January
Best Pace Since Recession, NAR Says
Existing home sales in January jumped to its fastest pace in nearly a decade, the National Association of Realtors reports.
Sales of single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops climbed 3.3 percent (5.69 million units), compared to December, representing the strongest gain since February 2007. Total sales are also up 3.8 percent since January 2016.
Single-family sales grew 2.6 percent from December to January, and are 3.7 percent higher than a year ago. Condominium and co-op sales leapt 8.3 percent month-over-month, and have increased 4.8 percent on an annual basis.
All major regions, except for the Midwest, saw sales gains in January. The Northeast increased 5.3 percent on a monthly basis, and is 6.7 percent higher year-over-year. The Midwest fell 1.5 percent in January, and also declined 0.8 percent from a year ago. The South rose 3.6 percent for the month, and is also 3.1 percent higher than January 2016. The West expanded 6.6 percent month-over-month, and is also 8.4 percent higher on an annual basis.
"Much of the country saw robust sales activity last month as strong hiring and improved consumer confidence at the end of last year appear to have sparked considerable interest in buying a home," said Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the NAR. "Market challenges remain, but the housing market is off to a prosperous start as homebuyers staved off inventory levels that are far from adequate and deteriorating affordability conditions."