Existing-Home Sales Rose 0.8% in September
Washington, DC, November 22, 2021-Total existing-home sales rose 0.8% from September to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.34 million in October, according to the National Association of Realtors. Sales fell 5.8% from a year ago (6.73 million in October 2020).
"Home sales remain resilient, despite low inventory and increasing affordability challenges," said Lawrence Yun, NAR's chief economist. "Inflationary pressures, such as fast-rising rents and increasing consumer prices, may have some prospective buyers seeking the protection of a fixed, consistent mortgage payment."
Total housing inventory at the end of October amounted to 1.25 million units, down 0.8% from September and down 12.0% from one year ago (1.42 million). Unsold inventory sits at a 2.4-month supply at the current sales pace, equal to September's supply, and down from 2.5 months in October 2020.
The median existing-home price for all housing types in October was $353,900, up 13.1% from October 2020 ($313,000), as prices climbed in each region. This marks 116 straight months of year-over-year increases, the longest-running streak on record.
"Among some of the workforce, there is an ongoing trend of flexibility to work anywhere, and this has contributed to an increase in sales in some parts of the country," said Yun. "Record-high stock markets and all-time high home prices have worked to significantly raise total consumer wealth and, when coupled with extended remote work flexibility, elevated housing demand in vacation regions."
Properties typically remained on the market for 18 days in October, up from 17 days in September and down from 21 days in October 2020. Eighty-two percent of homes sold in October 2021 were on the market for less than a month.
In October, first-time buyers were responsible for 29% of sales, up from 28% in September and down from 32% in October 2020. NAR's 2021 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers – released earlier this month-reported that the annual share of first-time buyers was 34%.