NAR released a summary of existing-home sales data showing that housing market activity increased for the third consecutive month, as May’s existing-home sales reached the 5.53 million seasonally adjusted annual rate. May’s existing-home sales are up 4.5 percent from a year ago which resulted in the strongest pace since February of 2007.
The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $239,700 in May, up 4.7 percent from a year ago.
Regionally, three of the four regions showed growth in prices from a year ago, with the West leading at 7.7 percent. The South had an increase of 5.9 percent, and the Midwest followed with a 4.8 percent increase. The Northeast had the only decline of 0.1 percent from May 2015.
From April, three of the four regions experienced increases in sales. The West dominated regional sales with an increase of 5.4 percent. The South had an increase of 4.6 percent while the Northeast had a 4.1 percent increase. The Midwest had a sizable decline of 6.5 percent.
All regions showed gains in sales from a year ago except the West where sales declined 1.7 percent. The Northeast had the biggest increase of 11.6 percent followed by the South with a gain of 6.5. The Midwest had the smallest gain of 3.2 percent. The South leads all regions in percentage of national sales at 41.2 percent while the Northeast has the smallest share at 13.9 percent.
May’s inventory figures are up 1.4 percent from last month to 2.15 million homes for sale but the level is below historical averages. Inventories are down 5.7 percent from a year ago. It will take 4.7 months to move the current level of inventory at the current sales pace. It takes approximately 32 days for a home to go from listing to a contract in the current housing market, down from 40 days one year ago.
Single family sales increased 1.9 percent while condos also increased 1.6 percent compared to last month. Single family home sales increased 4.7 percent and condo sales are also up 3.3 percent from a year ago. Both single family and condos had an increase in price with single family up 4.6 percent and condos up 6.0 percent from May 2015.