The National Association of Realtors® released a finding that existing home sales and condo sales increased by two percent in July, which was the 3rd month in a row for steady gains with sales reaching a 10.3 percent above prior year levels.
Commenting on the impressive sales growth, Lawrence Yun, NAR's chief economist, said, “The creation of jobs added at a steady clip and the prospect of higher mortgage rates and home prices down the road is encouraging more households to buy now,” Yun added, “As a result, current homeowners are using their increasing housing equity towards the down payment on their next purchase.”
The report also indicated inventory levels for homes for sale and available condos for sale remained low. Typically, a limited number of properties for sale causes real estate prices to rise at a much faster pace. In July of this year, real estate prices were 5.6 percent more than last year and rose year-over-year for the 41st consecutive month.
However, in spite of limited inventory and steady gains, ownership of homes continues to be an affordable option with relatively low mortgage rates and prices for rental properties ever rising.
Furthermore, the report found the typical number of days a property remained on the market was 42 days, up from 34 days in June.