A recent RE/MAX National Housing Report shows home sales in June were higher than sales for the previous month. This is the fourth consecutive month of increases.
According to the article in RISMedia, closed transactions for June were 4.5% higher than for the previous month, but were 1.95% lower than transactions for June last year. Last summer there was a rapid increase in the amount of property sold, and the 1.95% difference between June this year and last is the closest sales activity for this year has matched sales activity seen last summer. Home inventory levels and credit availability are still tight, but in spite of this prices in June continued to rise. They were 9.6% higher compared to the same time last year, and inventory levels are beginning to show signs of improvement.
June is the third consecutive month where there have been more homes for sale than the previous month. Based on the rate of home sales in June, the supply of inventory increased to 4.1 months. A supply of six months would indicate a market that was balanced. Real estate experts feel the news is positive, even though buyers still face challenges with financing. They point out that if the overall economy continues to improve then home sales should return to long-term historical averages.
At the beginning of the year home sales were sluggish, but all 52 metro areas reported monthly sales increases in March, and since then there have been four consecutive months of higher sales than the previous month. It now looks as if 2014 will be following a more traditional seasonal sales pattern in spite of the slow start.
The median sales price for all homes sold was $210,000 which is 6% higher than the median sales price in May, and 9.6% higher than the median price in June last year. Year on year, the median sales price has now increased for 29 consecutive months. Improving inventory levels do mean prices are not increasing as rapidly as 2013 when the median sales price rose by 12.6% in June 2013. Out of the 52 metro areas surveyed, eight had double-digit increases, and 41 had higher sales prices than a year earlier. The average time spent on the market was 62 days which is four days lower than in May, and three days lower than in June last year. This June marked the 25th consecutive month for homes taking an average of less than 90 days to sell, which is due to a combination of low inventory and high demand.