Morning Briefing: First time buyers return to boost existing home sales

by Steve Randall23 Jun 2015
First time buyers return to boost existing home sales
Existing home sales in May were at their highest pace for almost 6 years as first-time buyers returned to the market. The National Association of Realtors said that all the major regions experienced sales increases with the Northeast the top performer. All existing home sales rose 5.1 per cent to a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 5.35 million units. Following eight straight months of increases sales are now 9.2 per cent higher than a year ago.

The median existing-home price for all housing types in May was $228,700, which is 7.9 per cent up from a year earlier and is the 39th consecutive month of year-over-year price gains.
First-time buyers accounted for 32 per cent of existing home sales in May, up from 30 per cent in April and matching the highest share since September 2012. A year ago, first-time buyers represented 27 per cent of all buyers.

"The return of first-time buyers in May is an encouraging sign and is the result of multiple factors, including strong job gains among young adults, less expensive mortgage insurance and lenders offering low downpayment programs," said NAR’s chief economist Lawrence Yun, "More first-time buyers are expected to enter the market in coming months, but the overall share climbing higher will depend on how fast rates and prices rise."
John Legend, Chrissy Teigen list home in Nolita
Singer John Legend and his wife, model Chrissy Teigen, have listed their New York apartment in Nolita. The couple are planning to start a family and the one bedroom, 2.5 bathroom apartment is only just big enough for them and their three dogs. They bought the home in 2012 for $2.5 million and have transformed it into their dream urban space but they’ll need somewhere considerably larger if they follow through with their plans. Chrissy told DuJour magazine: “We want a lot of kids. I would love to have three or four of my own, and then adopt a few.” The Broome Street home is expected to sell for above $3 million.
California pending sales up for sixth consecutive year
The California Association of Realtors says that pending home sales were up 12.1 per cent on an annual basis from the revised 110.3 index recorded in May 2014, marking the sixth straight month of year-to-year gains and the fourth straight month of double-digit advances. On a month-over-month basis statewide pending sales were down 4.6 per cent with low supply in San Francisco among the contributing factors. There is plenty of optimism about in California though; a separate CAR survey of realtors revealed more floor calls, listing appointments, and open house traffic, compared to April. 


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