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US Housing Market

2021 ends with a bang in new-home sales 

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Sales of new homes closed the year on a high note in December, rising 11.9% from November’s revised number to a seasonally adjusted, annual rate of 811,000, while the median sales price fell to $377,700, the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development reported. 

On a year-over-year basis, the pace of new-residential sales measured in December was down 14%. Altogether, 762,000 new homes were sold in 2021, down 7.3% from the 822,000 sold in 2020. 

The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of September was 403,000, representing a supply of six months at the current sales rate, according to a press release. 

The share of completed homes/ready-to-occupy inventory in November was 9.7%, down from 13.7% a year ago, while the share of new-home inventory that was not started increased to 25% from 22%, First American Deputy Chief Economist Odeta Kushi said in a press release. 

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Demand for new homes will remain strong due to the millennial demographic tailwind,” Kushi said. “The lack of existing homes for sale nationwide to meet this demand is supportive of new construction. Indeed, you can’t buy what’s not being built. 

By region, the number of new homes sold in the Midwest jumped 56.4% from November to 86,000 and rose 14.9% to 456,000 in the South. New-home sales were up 0.4% in the West in December, at 242,000, while they fell 15.6% in the Northeast to 27,000. 

“Despite continued supply-chain issues, builders have been able to make headway on homes, and market demand remains high,” RCLCO Real Estate Consulting principal Kelly Mangold said. “This growth is notable because November and December are historically slower months for sales due to the holidays, yet performed strongly this year.

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Prospective home buyers in the U.S. are facing record-low times to weigh one of the most important investments in their lives.

A survey from the National Association of Realtors says home sales in the last year counted a median listing time of one week before going under contract, the Wall Street Journal reported. The rate — recorded for home sales between July 2020 and June 2021 — was the quickest since 1989.

 

The quick rate of home sales is leading buyers to give up safeguards in an effort to get a bid accepted before someone else can swoop in, the Journal reports. Contract termination rights are among those flying out the window to speed purchases along.

The quick buying and selling rates are also running up against a spike in home prices. NAR reports the median sales price during the year it tracked was 100 percent of the listing price, the highest since at least 2002; typically, the sales price is slightly below the listing.

According to NAR, the median sales price from the year it tracked was $305,000. The previous year, it was $272,500.

A previous survey by the National Association of Home Builders showed how one of the hottest housing markets in recent memory is affecting those actively searching for a new home.

The survey, published in September, said almost two-thirds of house hunters are stuck looking for at least three months. Almost 45 percent of those struggling to buy a home claim they keep getting outbid by other buyers, according to the Journal.

[WSJ] — Holden Walter-Warner

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US Housing Market

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Today Lab Coat Agents CEO Tristan Ahumada talks about a few things, one of which is that our blazing hot real estate market should “ease back to normal” over the couple years.

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Nationwide, home prices will bottom out at the end of this year, according to the forecasters at Moody’s Economy.com. Median prices will probably fall another 10% on top of the 27% they’ve plummeted since their 2006 peak. That prediction assumes that President Obama’s various recovery efforts – including billions to slow foreclosures and goose bank lending, plus a tax credit to most 2009 buyers who haven’t owned in the past three years – will have some effect. If they don’t, says Economy.com’s Mark Zandi, the bottom could come as late as 2011.

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