Things Are Looking Up! Existing-Home Sales & Prices Rise Again in April
Good news was released this week! The National Association of Realtors reported that home prices continued to rise as well as existing-home sales in the month of April.
Existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, and co-ops, increased 3.4 percent in April compared to March 2012. These new figures are 10 percent higher than April 2011. This year over year increase is a positive sign that the market is slowly making a comeback and is poised to grow strong through 2012.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said the following regarding the housing recovery: “It is no longer just the investors who are taking advantage of high affordability conditions. A return of normal home buying for occupancy is helping home sales across all price points, and now the recovery appears to be extending to home prices.” He also noted that “the general downtrend in both listed and shadow inventory has shifted from a buyers’ market to one that is much more balanced, but in some areas it has become a seller’s market.”
A seller’s market? That’s something we haven’t heard in a very long time and is excellent news for people who are planning on selling their home in the near future! The market is also slowly becoming less saturated with available properties. The amount of existing homes that were available for sale at the end of April was 2.54 million, which represents a 6.6-month supply. That’s a decrease of 20.6 percent from the same time last year when there was a 9.1-month supply.
Lawrence Yun also stated: “A diminishing share of foreclosed property sales is helping home values. Moreover, an acute shortage of inventory in certain markets is leading to multiple biddings and escalating price conditions,” He notes some areas with tight supply include the Washington, D.C., area; Miami; Naples, Fla.; North Dakota; Phoenix; Orange County, Calif.; and Seattle. “We expect stronger price increases in most of these areas.”
These reports are important for buyers and sellers to monitor. If you’re considering buying a home soon, take note of the changes in the market and you’ll begin to understand that things are improving across the board. If you’re looking to score a great deal on a home, taking the dive into home ownership may be something to do sooner than later.