People bought fewer new single-family homes in January. According to the Commerce Department, sales in this category dropped 7.8 percent during that month to a seasonally adjusted 593,000 units. That was the lowest level since August 2017, and it was the second straight month in which home sales declined. Some believe that this may be a sign of a slowing housing market in California and other states.
The pace of home sales varied in different regions of the country. For instance, the Northeast saw new home sales fall 33.3 percent. Home sales in the South dropped 14.2 percent. One explanation for the decline in sales is a lack of available homes on the market. This has caused prices to rise, which has limited the number of affordable properties available for first-time buyers.
However, the latest figures indicate that there was a 6.1 month supply of available homes. This tends to indicate that the market has found an appropriate balance between buyers and sellers. There were 301,000 new homes available in January, which was the highest level since March 2009. Rising mortgage rates and meager wage growth may also be contributing to a decline in sales. As of Feb. 22, the average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage was 4.4 percent.
There may be many variables to consider when buying residential property. Buyers may need to determine their price range, consider the overall housing market and learn more about the process of getting financing. They may also need to understand how to put an offer on a house and do so in a timely manner. An attorney may often be of assistance in this regard.