Home sales slipped in August amid tightening supply says RE/MAX

by Steve Randall18 Sep 2019

The familiar story of home sales pressured by lack of available homes was evident in August.

The RE/MAX National Housing Report shows a 1.6% decline in sales year-over-year and a decline of 4.2% month-over-month as demand exceeded new listings and inventory contracted to 2.8 months of supply.

The 5.5% year-over-year decline in inventory across the 53 metro areas analyzed was the largest since July 2018 when it dropped 7.8% and was a step up from the 1.5% decline in July 2019.

"The modest inventory growth that started last fall has been swallowed up by demand as buyers have returned to the market, likely spurred on by attractive interest rates," said RE/MAX CEO Adam Contos. "Home sales dipping at the same time inventory falls suggests there may have been some reluctance on the part of sellers to list their homes. Nevertheless, demand is again ahead of supply, extending the favorable seller's market that has been in place for several years."

The strong buyer demand was also evidenced by the speed at which homes sold in August – 44 days – narrowly missing the record for the month of August (43 days) which was set a year ago.

Larger than usual price drop
The Median Sales Price rose year-over-year by 5.7% to $263,000 but was down 3.6% month-over-month. While home prices typically decline from July to August, the decrease was the steepest drop-off between the two months in report history.

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