Sales of Existing U.S. Homes Rise to Highest Level in Nine Years

  • Demand driven by higher end of the market as stocks rise
  • First-time buyers return, making up highest share since 2012

Sales of previously owned homes unexpectedly climbed in June to the highest level in more than nine years, giving a boost to residential real estate as it approached the end of its busy selling season.

Key Points

  • Contract closings climbed 1.1 percent to a 5.57 million annual rate (forecast was 5.48 million), the most since February 2007
  • Sales increased 1.9 percent from June 2015 before seasonal adjustment
  • Median price of an existing home rose 4.8 percent from June 2015 to $247,700
  • Inventory of available properties dropped 5.8 percent from a year earlier to 2.12 million units, the lowest for a June since 2001

Big Picture

Americans buoyed by stable job growth, the promise of higher wages and rebounding stock prices are in good position to take advantage of historically low borrowing costs, keeping the housing recovery on course in the eighth year of the expansion. At the same time, builders are running up against a limited supply of available lots for construction, signaling a limit for real-estate growth…

Sales of Existing U.S. Homes Rise to Highest Level in Nine Years

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