Existing-Home Sales Up Slightly in September

Existing-Home Sales Up Slightly in September

Single-family rental companies, which have a growing footprint nationwide, also took advantage of owners seeking to get out fast.

This month's sales pace is 1.5 percentage points below September 2016 and is the second lowest SAAR sales pace seen in a year.

Despite this monthly increase, existing-home sales fell 1.5% in September from a year earlier.

Cordova Capital LP purchased 14 properties in September, up from three in August and none a year ago. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal expected a rate of 5.30 million sales in September. Florida's sales were still down 22% compared to this time a year ago.

The total housing inventory rose 1.6% to 1.9 million homes available for sale, but remained 6.4% lower than last September, the 28th consecutive month of year-over-year decline.

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"Sales activity likely would have been somewhat stronger if not for the fact that parts of Texas and South Florida - hit by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma - saw temporary, but notable declines", says Lawrence Yun, chief economist for NAR, in a statement. September's price increase marks the 67th straight month of year-over-year gains. August's sales pace was unrevised.

The report notes that the median existing-home price for all housing types in September was $245,100-representing a 4.2 percent increase from a year ago at $235,200.

"A continuation of last month's alleviating price growth, which was the slowest since last December (4.5 percent), would improve affordability conditions and be good news for the would-be buyers who have been held back by higher prices this year", said Yun.

Driven primarily by consumers displaced from housing as a result of Hurricane Harvey's widespread destruction, demand for lease properties across Houston soared to record levels in September. Sales rose just 3.3% in the West and 1.6% in the Midwest and they were flat in the Northeast.

In the South, existing-home sales decreased 0.9 percent to an annual rate of 2.13 million.

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