Existing-home sales fell 0.7% in January to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.00 million, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Sales fell year-over-year, down 36.9% from December 2022. First-time buyers were responsible for 31% of sales in January, identical to December but up from 27% in January 2022.
“Home sales are bottoming out,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “Prices vary depending on a market’s affordability, with lower-priced regions witnessing modest growth and more expensive regions experiencing declines.”
Total housing inventory registered at the end of January was 980,000 units, up 2.1% from December and 15.3% from one year ago (850,000).
The median existing home price for all housing types in January was $359,000, an increase of 1.3% from January 2022 ($354,300), as prices climbed in three out of four U.S. regions while falling in the West. This marks 131 consecutive months of year-over-year increases, the longest-running streak on record.
Distressed sales – foreclosures and short sales – represented 1% of sales in January, identical to last month and one year ago.
Read the NAR release.