July new home sales dip after a successful June

by Kelly McCabe

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According to new data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau, sales of newly built, single-family homes in July fell 9.4 percent to a rate of 571,000.

“The year-to-date growth shows that new home sales continue to trend upward at a steady pace over the longer term,” National Association of Home Builders senior economist Michael Neal said on NAHB Now. “Steady economic growth and a healthier labor market suggest that the underlying economic fundamentals remain in place for a continued recovery.”

July’s rate — seasonally adjusted to 276,000 — is the lowest total since December, but is still 9.2 percent higher than in July 2016. It also follows June’s rate of 630,000, which is the second-highest amount since the Great Recession.

“Some pull back in new home sales this month is not surprising after strong May and June readings,” NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald said on NAHB Now. “Builders must continue to manage construction costs to ensure houses remain affordable.”

Sales around the country varied:

  • Sales grew 6.2 percent in the Midwest, the only region to experience an increase.
  • In the South, sales fell 4.1 percent.
  • A 21.3 percent drop was seen in the West.
  • The biggest dip was in the Northeast, where sales fell 23.8 percent.