Home sales increase in January
Yearly increase more than 9 percent
Sales of existing homes increased in January on both a month-over-month and year-over-year basis, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) said in a recent report.
Total sales of existing homes rose 0.4 percent on a monthly basis in January, and came in 9.1 percent higher than what was seen a year earlier in January 2012.
Housing inventory dropped in the month, falling to the lowest housing supply seen since April 2005. At the end of January, inventory stood at 1.74 million existing homes for sale, a 4.9 percent decrease from the previous month.
According to the NAR, listed housing inventory is down 25.3 percent from a year earlier, and, even more, raw unsold inventory is at its lowest point since December 1999.
“The typical home is selling nearly four weeks faster than it did a year ago,” Gary Thomas, NAR President, said in a statement. “In this environment, Realtors® can help buyers strike a balance between moving quickly and protecting their interests, such as making offers contingent upon a satisfactory home inspection and obtaining a loan; of course, a loan pre-qualification may help too.”
Homes selling faster
In January, there was also a drop in average time on the market.
In the month, the median time on market dropped to 71 days, a drop from 73 days the previous month. A year earlier, in January 2012, the median time on market was 28.3 percent higher – 99 days.
Three regions see sales increases
Sales of existing homes rose 4.8 percent month-over-month in the Northeast and came in 12.1 percent higher than a year earlier.
In the Midwest, existing-home sales were 3.6 percent higher in January than in December 2012 and 17.2 percent higher than in January 2012.
The South region experience a modest month-over-month sales increase in January of 1.0 percent. Despite the small monthly gain, however, sales in the South were 14.0 percent above January 2012.
The West was the only region to see a decline in existing-home sales, dropping 5.7 percent on both a monthly and yearly basis.