Existing Home Sales On Show Promise In February

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Peoples Home Equity comments on the latest National Association of Realtors existing home sales report.

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Existing home sales are just -5.4% below their 2014 peak at 5.16 million in October 2014, this peak may be surpassed in the late summer of 2015.

Lenders like Peoples Home Equity were pleased to see that existing home sales of single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops increased 1.2% for February.

According to the latest March 23rd National Association of Realtors existing home sales report, the annual pace of sales had increased from 4.82 million in January to 4.88 million in February. This figure is 27.4% above the historical average of 3.82 million since 1968. On a year-over-year basis the market seems to be doing very well, “Sales are 4.7 percent higher than a year ago and above year-over-year totals for the fifth consecutive month.”

Peoples Home Equity is looking for continued improvement in the months ahead. Existing home sales are just -5.4% below their 2014 peak at 5.16 million in October 2014, this peak may be surpassed in the late summer of 2015.    Buyers are anxious of higher mortgage rates, and they also feel like purchasing a home before prices increase further. This was pointed out by Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors by saying “Stronger price growth is a boon for homeowners looking to build additional equity, but it continues to be an obstacle for current buyers looking to close before rates rise.”

In addition, young first-time home buyers are eager to purchase a home since the total cost of a mortgage, HOA fees, and property taxes is often less than the cost of rent. In fact, even if mortgage rates start to increase, Peoples Home Equity expects application demand to remain high among 25 to 30 year olds. With 30-year fixed rates still averaging below 4% Peoples Home Equity thinks there will be a rush to submit mortgage applications once the majority of Americans finished their 2014 taxes.

Regionally the National Association of Realtors stated the following:
“February existing-home sales in the Northeast dropped 6.5 percent to an annual rate of 580,000, but are still 3.6 percent above a year ago. The median price in the Northeast was $241,800, which is 3.3 percent above a year ago.

In the Midwest, existing-home sales were at an annual level of 1.08 million in February, unchanged from January and 4.9 percent above February 2014. The median price in the Midwest was $152,900, up 8.8 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the South increased 1.9 percent to an annual rate of 2.11 million in February, and are now 6.0 percent above February 2014. The median price in the South was $177,900, up 8.5 percent from a year ago.

Existing-home sales in the West climbed 5.7 percent to an annual rate of 1.11 million in February, and are now 2.8 percent above a year ago. The median price in the West was $290,100, which is 4.2 percent above February 2014.”

Peoples Home Equity, a Nashville, TN based lender with many braches locations in the Midwest understands the volatility change of sales from season to season. The lender continues to see strong price growth in the west but expects the higher mortgage application growth to occur in the Midwest. Next month should be a higher sales report, as March begins the spring buying period when real activity ramps up.

If in need of a mortgage, consider speaking to a Peoples Home Equity loan officer today at: 262-563-4026

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Giorgio U Ferrero
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