Housing Market Outlooks Rise Alongside Existing Home Sales

Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Exclusive Collection

October was a great month for existing home sales according to recent reports released from the National Association of Realtors®. Despite interruptions from Hurricane Sandy, as well as the nation’s preoccupation with the election, existing home sales continued to rise by 2.1 percent alongside increases in price due to inventory shortage.

Existing home sales, which include single-family homes, condos, co-ops and townhomes, reached an annual rate of 4.79 million in October, a significant 10.9 percent increase above where they were in October 2011. In addition, the national median price for existing homes was $178,600, which was a comparable 11.1 percent increase above the price last year.

Total inventory fell by 1.4 percent to only 2.14 million available, approximately a 5.4 month supply at the current rate of sales. This is the lowest housing supply on record since the 5.2 month supply reported on February of 2006.

Total time for existing homes on the market was an average of 71 days in October, down 26 percent from last year’s reported 96 days. Nearly one third of homes sold in October were listed for less than a month.

In response to the inventory shortage on the market, housing starts increased by 3.6% in October, adding a projected 894,000 homes in time. While this is still well below the peak set in 2007, it is conducive to the slow-but-steady pace set for the recovering market. Fannie Mae recently announced a revised housing forecast in light of recent information, anticipating an increase of 10 percent in new and existing home sales for the year, alongside an additional 6 percent increase in 2013.

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