Existing home sales increased 4% in November to an annualized 4.42 million units, seasonally adjusted, according to NAFCU.
Sales of single-family homes rose 4.5%, while sales of condominiums went unchanged from October. In year-over-year, existing home sales were up by 12.2%, NAFCU said in the Macro Data Flash Report it issued this week.
Every region reported positive sales growth during November, with the Northeast seeing the strongest increase at 9.8%. The Midwest, 4.3%, came in second; the West, 3.6%, was third; and the South was in last with a 2.4% growth, the report said.
Year-over-year sales were also up in all four regions, with the Midwest reporting the strongest increase at 15.7%. The South was second at 12.3%, the West was third with 11.5% and the Northeast was in last with a 7.7% increase.
The median home price of a non-seasonally adjusted existing home increased by 2.1% to $164,200 in November, but was down by 3.5% from the previous November. Year-over-year median home prices fell in all four regions, with the biggest decline coming in the West at 8.4%. The Midwest’s 4% decline was the second biggest, the South’s 2.1% decline was third and the Northeast’s 0.1% decline was the smallest.
The months that homes were available for sale decreased from 7.7 months of supple in October to seven months of supply in November, NAFCU said. The inventory level decreased by 5.8% from October and fell by 18.1% from a year ago, which resulted in 2.58 million unsold homes in the market.
“Existing home sales increased 4% from October, beating analysts’ expectations,” said NAFCU Chief Economist Tun Wai. “The National Association of Realtors revised prior data after confessing to double-counting properties going back to January 2007. Annual sales figures were slashed by an average of 14%, but growth rates were mostly unchanged.
"The supply of homes on the market was also revised downward, while home price data was unaffected. The seven months of supply on hand in November is the lowest figure for 2011. Distressed homes accounted for 29 percent of total sales in November, up one percentage point from October. While the housing market has enjoyed a mild improvement during the second half of the year, low job growth and tight credit will prevent any sizable gains heading into 2012.”