Existing home sales slowed yet again this month, falling under the six-million mark for the first time in seven months, according to new data released by the National Association of REALTORS®, down from 6.02 million in February to 5.77 million in March—a decrease of 2.7%. Year-over-year, sales are down 4.5%.
Single-family homes were down by 2.7% since last month, to a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.13 million. Condos and co-ops fell by 3.0% to 640,000 units in March.
After home sales reached their highest level since the housing bubble in 2021, experts and real estate professionals have been closely watching data from the first few months of this year, trying to determine the direction of a still-turbulent market.
Existing home sales have been falling since December after rising month-over-month for most of 2021.
Existing-Home Sales: 1.27 million (-3.1% YoY)
Median Price: $271,200 (+10.4 YoY)
Existing-Home Sales: 670,000 (-11.6% YoY)
Median Price: $390,200 (+6.8% YoY)
Existing-Home Sales: 2.62 million (-3.0% YoY)
Median Price: $339,000 (+21.2% YoY)
Existing-Home Sales: 1.21 million (-4.7% YoY)
Median Price: $519,900 (+5.4% YoY)
What the industry is saying:
“Housing demand remains robust, even in the face of fast-rising mortgage rates, which were near 4.7% in late March and have now topped 5%, as climbing rents keep potential first-time homebuyers motivated,” said Danielle Hale, realtor.com® chief economist.
“At the same time, the number of home sellers continues to trail what the market has seen in prior years meaning that relatively low numbers of homes for sale remain an obstacle for buyers, even as we move past the seasonal low-point in the number of options for homebuyers. And against this backdrop, the typical home sales price continues to rise, outstripping even the 40-year high pace of consumer price inflation, which was up 8.5%. Home price growth and the rising cost of financing the home purchase is causing some homebuyers to think twice about whether or not a home is in their budget, especially when inflation is already stretching budgets thin from rising costs on everything from gas to groceries.”
“The housing market is starting to feel the impact of sharply rising mortgage rates and higher inflation taking a hit on purchasing power. Still, homes are selling rapidly, and home price gains remain in the double-digits…home prices have consistently moved upward as supply remains tight,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. “However, sellers should not expect the easy-profit gains and should look for multiple offers to fade as demand continues to subside.”“Finding the right home in this market–from making an offer to eventually buying–is an intense process,” said Leslie Rouda-Smith, NAR president. “The current state of housing is indeed one of the most competitive markets that I have witnessed, but with patience and the assistance of a trusted REALTORS®, the outcome can be very rewarding.”
Jesse Williams is RISMedia’s associate online editor. Email him your real estate news ideas, email@example.com.