Existing-home sales in the Northeast, the Midwest, and the South have registered second consecutive month of growth, says the National Association of Realtors’s (NAR) housing stat. Only the West has exhibited a decline in the number of existing homes sold in August.

Total existing-home sales (single-family homes, townhomes, co-ops and condos) rose from 5.42 million in July to 5.49 million in August (calculations based on seasonally adjusted annual rate). Year-over-year overall sales have seen a spike of 2.6%.

Despite looming economic certainty, buyers are finding the prevailing interest rates irresistible, if the statement of Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist be paraphrased.

The NAR data further reveals that the median existing-home price stands at $278,000 for August, spread over all the housing types. This figure marks an upswing of 4.7%, calculated year-over-year.

Lawrence Yun issues a caveat regarding the inventory at hand. Unless homebuilders quickly take up the cudgels, home prices (buoyed by low housing inventory) will rise at a speed disproportionate to income. The NAR data quickly takes stock of the situation, suggesting that the total housing inventory has fallen to 1.86 million from 1.90 million in July. Unsold inventory, standing at 4.1- month is also a decline from the numbers we had in July and even August 2018.

While nearly half of the homes sold in August were actively listed in the market for less than a month, the Days on Market in August (31 days) are a hike on Days on Market for July (29 days).

NAR’s 2018 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers had disclosed that the first-time buyers took up 1/3rd of the total homes sold in 2018. This 33% had fallen to 32% in July this year and has come down further to 31% in August.

Studying NAR data for different regions

To reiterate, the West has seen a decline in the numbers of existing- homes sold in August. The remaining 3 regions have registered a hike. However, seen year-over-year, all the four regions have posted an uptick in comparison to August 2018, calls the NAR data.

For the Northeast, existing-home sales in August have risen by 1.4% to 7.6% (the annual rate being 710,000). The median Price, says the NAR data, has come down by 0.3% year-over-year to $303,500.

Existing-home sales in the Midwest have posted an uptick of 3.1% (the annual rate being 1.31 million) in August. The median price has come up to $220,000 which corresponds to an upswing of 6.6%.

For the South, existing-home sales in August have risen by 0.9% (the annual rate being 2.33 million).  The median price in the South stands at $240,300, displaying a rise of 5.4%.

The West has played a spoilsport, registering existing-home sales at an annual rate of 1.14 million in August- a figure which corresponds to a decline of 3.4%. The median price in the West stands at $415,900, an uptick of 5.7% year-over-year.

Single-family and Condo/Co-op Sales

The single-family home sales stand at 4.90 million (seasonally adjusted rate). This is a hike of 1.23% from 4.84 million recorded in July. Year-over-year, this is a hike of 2.9%. The median home price for the single-family homes, claims the NAR data, stands at $280,700 in August, reflecting an uptick of 4.7% year-over-year.