Existing-home sales fell 2.7% in March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.77 million, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Sales fell year-over-year, down 4.5% from March 2021. First-time buyers were responsible for 30% of sales in March, up from 29% in February and down from 32% in March 2021.
Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist, states that “The housing market is starting to feel the impact of sharply rising mortgage rates and higher inflation taking a hit on purchasing power. Still, homes are selling rapidly, and home price gains remain in the double-digits.”
The total housing inventory in March was 950,000 units, up 11.8% from February’s inventory and down 9.5% from one year ago (1.03 million). The median home price was $375,300, up 15.0% from March 2021 ($326,300), as prices rose in every region. This marks 121 straight months of year-over-year gains.
Distressed sales represented less than 1% of sales in March, equal to the previous month’s percentage and equal to March 2021.
Read the NAR release.