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Existing-home sales down in June despite inventory gains

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Existing-home sales fell in June for the third straight month, according to the latest report from the National Association of Realtors. Completed transactions on single-family homes, condominiums, townhomes and co-ops fell 0.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.38 million in June. In May, existing-home sales saw a 0.4 percent drop. Compared to the same month last year, existing-home sales in June 2018 were down 2.2 percent.

“There continues to be a mismatch since the spring between the growing level of homebuyer demand in most of the country in relation to the actual pace of home sales, which are declining,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. “The root cause is without a doubt the severe housing shortage that is not releasing its grip on the nation’s housing market.

Existing-home inventory rose with 1.95 million homes for sale, a 4.3 percent increase from last month and a 0.4 percent increase from June 2017. Although existing-home inventory was up, it did not rise enough to satisfy still-increasing demand.

“It’s important to note that despite the modest year-over-year rise in inventory, the current level is far from what’s needed to satisfy demand levels,” added Yun.

Median existing-home prices in June reached another all-time high at $276,900, a 5.2 percent increase from last month’s median price of $263,300. The price increase in June 2018 marks the 76th straight month with a year-over-year median price increase.

Unchanged from the last three months is existing-home time on market. In June, homes were typically on market for 26 days and 58 percent of homes were sold in less than a month.

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