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September 2017

Home sales across U.S. declined during July, but volumes still ahead of 2016

Sales of new homes across the U.S. for the first seven months of 2017 were up 9.2 percent compared to the same period in 2016, but reports for July show three of the four regions experienced declines. The overall seasonally adjusted monthly drop was 9.4 percent.

Despite the faltering sales reported for July, year-to-date closings are 9.2 percent ahead of the pace reported for 2016. Each region recorded year-over-year gains, led by the Northeast at 16.1 percent, and the West, up 14.6 percent.

The year-over-year monthly drops occurred in regions of the country that are furthest ahead over the first seven months of 2017, noted the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Theiy include the Northeast (down 23.8 percent),the West (down 21.3 percent) and the South (down 4.1 percent). Only the Midwest reported a gain in sales (up 6.2 percent), according to the latest figures from the U.S. Census Bureaiu and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

For the past 12 months, only the West registered a gain (up 1.4 percent), while the other three regions had double-digit drops.

The latest report shows overall inventory rose to 5.8 months, still below the 6.0 benchmark used as an indicator of a healthy level.

The median sales price rose just 0.67 percent over the month to $313,700. Sales of new homes priced under $300,000 fell 1 percent to 47 percent, with the remaining 53 percent priced at $300,000, marking a 1 percent increase.