Existing-Home Sales Rise in February to Highest Level Since Last April

Existing-home sales rose a strong 3.9% to annual rate1 of 6.69 million units in February following a healthy gain in January, reaching the highest level since last April, according to the National Association of Realtors. The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $212,800 in February, down 1.3 percent from February 2006 when the median was $215,700. 

Single-family home sales increased 3.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.88 million in February from 5.67 million in January, but are 3.4 percent below the 6.09 million-unit pace in February 2006. The median existing single-family home price was $211,100 in February, down 1.5 percent from a year ago. 

Regionally, existing-home sales in the Northeast surged 14.2 percent to a level of 1.21 million in February, and are 3.4 percent higher than February 2006. The median existing-home price in the Northeast was $265,900, down 1.4 percent from a year earlier. 

Total existing-home sales – including single-family, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops – rose 3.9 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate1 of 6.69 million units in February from a downwardly revised level of 6.44 million in January, but are 3.6 percent below the 6.94 million-unit pace in February 2006. Last month’s increase was the biggest monthly rise in three years – sales also rose 3.9 percent in March 2004. 

Total housing inventory levels rose 5.9 percent at the end of February to 3.75 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 6.7-month supply at the current sales pace compared with a 6.6-month supply in January. 

Raw inventories peaked last July at 3.86 million, and supplies topped at 7.4 months in October. 

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