Existing-Home Sales Descended 4.3% in March

By klrw460 April 18, 2024

On April 18, 2024, in Washington, the National Association of REALTORS® reported a decrease in existing-home sales for March across most U.S. regions, except for a rise in the Northeast, marking its first increase since November 2023. Overall, sales fell by 4.3% from February to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.19 million, a 3.7% drop compared to March 2023.

Lawrence Yun, NAR’s Chief Economist, noted that despite a rebound from low points, stagnant interest rates are holding back home sales, despite the job market showing strong growth since before the pandemic. Yun emphasized the benefits of the growing housing inventory, which increased to 1.11 million units by the end of March, offering a better market for sellers amid rising property prices.

The median price for all types of existing homes reached $393,500 in March, up 4.8% from the previous year, with prices increasing in all regions. The REALTORS® Confidence Index indicated properties were selling faster than in February, with a slight increase in the participation of first-time buyers. Meanwhile, cash purchases decreased, reflecting a shift in the type of buyers active in the market.

According to Freddie Mac, the 30-year fixed mortgage rate was 6.88% as of April 11, showing an increase from the previous week and significantly higher than the previous year.

Sales specifics showed a decline in both single-family homes and condos/co-ops, with single-family homes decreasing to 3.8 million—a 4.3% drop from February—and condo sales falling to 390,000 units, down 4.9% from last month.

Regionally, sales in the Northeast increased, ending a four-month decline, while the Midwest, South, and West saw reductions in sales volume. The West recorded the steepest decline of 8.2% from the previous month. Prices, however, continued to rise across all regions, with the Northeast experiencing the most significant price increase.

For more information, read the original press release from: https://www.nar.realtor/newsroom/existing-home-sales-descended-4-3-in-march