Existing Home Sales Decline for the Eleventh Straight Month

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    by Mish Shedlock, Mish Talk:

    It was nearly a clean sweep for existing home sales in 2022, down every month except January.

    The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reports Existing-Home Sales Receded 1.5% in December

    Key Highlights

    • Existing-home sales faded for the eleventh straight month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.02 million. Sales waned 1.5% from November and 34.0% from one year ago.

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    • The median existing-home price for all housing types in December was $366,900, an increase of 2.3% from December 2021 ($358,800), as prices rose in all regions. This marks 130 consecutive months of year-over-year increases, the longest-running streak on record.
    • Existing-home sales totaled 5.03 million in 2022, down 17.8% from 2021, as last year’s rapidly escalating interest rate environment weighed on the residential real estate market.
    • Total housing inventory registered at the end of December was 970,000 units, which was down 13.4% from November but up 10.2% from one year ago (880,000). Unsold inventory sits at a 2.9-month supply at the current sales pace, down from 3.3 months in November but up from 1.7 months in December 2021.
    • First-time buyers were responsible for 31% of sales in December, up from 28% in November and 30% in December 2021. NAR’s 2022 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers – released in November 20224 – found that the annual share of first-time buyers was 26%, the lowest since NAR began tracking the data.

    Existing Home Sales Supply

    Existing-Home Sales Supply 2022-12

    Supply fell because sellers could not get the price they wanted and pulled houses from the market.

    Existing-Home Sales Month-Over-Month

    Existing-Home Sales Percent 2022-12

    Track Record

    • It’s been a perfect record since January, the last time to buy before mortgage rates soared.
    • After mild declines in August and September transactions resumed their crash in October and November.
    • Sales are down 34 percent from a year ago and 38 percent since January.

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