Coming on the heels of a double-digit increase in new home sales for July, the National Association of Realtors is reporting that sales of existing homes were down 3.2% in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.39 million units compared to 5.57 million in June. The median existing-home price for all housing types in July was $244,100, up 5.3% from one year ago. July’s price increase marks the 53rd consecutive month of year-over-year gains. Total housing inventory at the end of July was 2.13 million existing homes available for sale representing a 4.7-month supply.
All-cash sales represented 21% of transactions in July. Individual investors, who account for many cash sales, purchased 11% of homes in July, unchanged from June and down from 13 percent a year ago. Seventy percent of investors paid in cash in July.
“Severely restrained inventory and the tightening grip it’s putting on affordability is the primary culprit for the considerable sales slump throughout much of the country last month…..the lack of supply is stifling the efforts of many prospective buyers attempting to purchase while mortgage rates hover at historical lows.” Said Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist.