News & Opinions
The latest news and insights from Hanley Wood’s outspoken experts and key thought-leaders throughout the residential and commercial design and construction industry.
Lorraine Woellert / Bloomberg / October 21, 2013
Purchases of previously owned U.S. homes fell in September for the first time in three months, retreating from an almost four-year high as rising prices and mortgage rates discouraged would-be buyers.
Sales dropped 1.9 percent to a 5.29 million annual rate, the National Association of Realtors reported today in Washington. The median forecast of 67 economists in a Bloomberg survey called for the pace to slow to 5.3 million. Prices climbed 11.7 percent, pushing affordability to an almost five-year low, the group said.
Higher borrowing costs will probably hold back demand, slowingRead More
Jonathan Smoke / Hanley Wood / September 20, 2013
Earlier this week the National Association of Realtors reported that existing home sales were up in August over July when most economists were expecting a decline. Instead, the pace of sales in August was at the highest level since February 2007. Let me make one more important historical comparison. If we exclude 2002-2006 from our data set because of the abnormal level of activity in the heart of the housing boom, there have only been 5 other months in history (going back to 1968) that existing single-family home sales have been higher: January and February 2007, August and December 2001,Read More
Stephen Melman / NAHB / September 19, 2013
Existing home sales increased 1.7% in August, and were up 13.2% from the same period a year ago to the highest level since February 2007. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported that August 2013 total existing home sales were at a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.48 million units combined for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops. That compares to 5.39 million units in July, and 4.84 million units during the same period a year ago. The South and Midwest increased 3.8% and 3.1% respectively, while the Northeast remained flat and the West decreased 2.3% from last month.Read More
Comments on Existing Home Sales: Too early to see impact of higher mortgage rates, Inventory has Bottomed
Bill McBride / Calculated Risk / August 21, 2013
First, the headline sales number was no surprise (see Lawler: Early Look at Existing Home Sales in July).
Second, the strong sales rate in July is not a sign that higher mortgage rates have had no impact on sales. The NAR reports CLOSED sales, and the usual escrow period is 45 to 60 days. Mortgage rates didn’t start increasing sharply until the 2nd half of May (see Freddie Mac Weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey®), so buyers could have locked in rates in May – and pushed to close in July. My guess is sales will be down in August reflecting higher mortgage rates.
The key number inRead More
Stephen Melman / NAHB / July 22, 2013
Existing home sales decreased 1.2% in June, but were up 15.2% from the same period a year ago. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported that June 2013 total existing home sales were at a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.08 million units combined for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops. That compares to a downwardly revised 5.14 million units in May, and 4.41 million units during the same period a year ago. The Midwest reported the same sales level as the previous month, and the other three regions decreased slightly. All regions were up from a year ago: 17.5% in theRead More