Existing-Home Sales Fall 2.7% in April

Existing-home sales fell by 2.7% in April to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.85 million, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). This is the third month of declining sales. Sales rose year-over-year, up 33.9% from April 2020. First-time buyers were responsible for 31% of sales in April, down from 32% in March and 36% in April 2020.

Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, states that demand from buyers remains high but record low inventory continues to slow down sales. He also noted that first time buyers continue to have trouble purchasing properties because of affordability, competition with cash buyers and properties leaving the market at such a rapid pace. “Home sales were down again in April from the prior month, as housing supply continues to fall short of demand,” said Yun “We’ll see more inventory come to the market later this year as further COVID-19 vaccinations are administered, and potential home sellers become more comfortable listing and showing their homes. The falling number of homeowners in mortgage forbearance will also bring about more inventory.

The total housing inventory in April was 1.16 million units, up 10.5% from March’s inventory and down 20.5% from one year ago (1.46 million). The median home price was $341,600, up 19.1% from April 2020 ($286,800), as prices rose in every region. This marks 110 straight months of year-over-year gains.

Distressed sales represented less than 1% of sales in April, equal to the pervious month’s percentage but down from 3% in April 2020.

Read the NAR release.