Existing home sales increase in May

Existing-home sales increased slightly 0.3% in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.30 million, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Sales fell year-over-year, down 20.4% from May 2022. First-time buyers were responsible for 28% of sales in May, down from 29% in April.

“Mortgage rates heavily influence the direction of home sales,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “Relatively steady rates have led to several consecutive months of consistent home sales.”

Total housing inventory registered at the end of May was 1.08 million units, up 3.8% from April but down 6.1% from one year ago (1.15 million).

The median existing-home price for all housing types in May was $396,100, a decline of 3.1% from May 2022 ($408,600). Prices grew in the Northeast and Midwest but fell in the South and West.

Distressed sales – foreclosures and short sales – represented 2% of sales in May, virtually unchanged from last month and the prior year.

Read the NAR release.