Total existing-home sales were up by 1.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.62 million in May from a downwardly revised 5.56 million in April, according to new data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR
). May’s sales were 2.7 percent higher on a year-over-year measurement and were the third highest over the past year.
The median existing-home price for all housing types in May was $252,800, up 5.8 percent from the $238,900 mark in May 2016. Last month’s level also surpassed the June 2016 peak of $247,600 to become the highest median sales price recorded by NAR.
The total housing inventory ended May at 2.1 percent to 1.96 million existing homes available for sale, which is 8.4 percent lower than a year ago (2.14 million); inventory has been falling on a year-over-year measurement for the last 24 consecutive months. Unsold inventory is at a 4.2-month supply at the current sales pace, down from 4.7 months a year ago.
“Home prices keep chugging along at a pace that is not sustainable in the long run,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “Current demand levels indicate sales should be stronger, but it’s clear some would-be buyers are having to delay or postpone their home search because low supply is leading to worsening affordability conditions.”