New Homes Sales Gain in June, But Gains Are Relative
After a down month in May, the sales of newly-built homes appears back on track.
As published by the Census Bureau, June’s New Home Sales report showed:
- A 24 percent sales volume increase from the month prior
- A 2-month drop in the supply of newly-built home
There are now just 210,000 new homes for sale nationwide.
June’s data is a major improvement over May, but it’s possible that the true “new home market” may be softer than the statistics suggest. This is for several reasons.
First, we’re comparing June’s sales data to the worst month in New Home Sales history.
In May, sales of new homes totaled just 267,000 units nationwide. That’s one-quarter fewer sales than in the previous worst month in New Home Sales history. May’s sales levels were awful by any measure but June’s improvement to 330,000 units remains second-worst sales levels ever posted.
Second, although much improved, June’s new home supply of 7.6 months is elevated versus the historical norm near 6.0 months. The last year has averaged 7.7 months.
For buyers of new homes , this combination of low sales volume and higher-than-normal inventory may be a positive. It’s the main reason why homebuilder confidence is reeling and the downturn has opened some doors for big discounts and deals. Free upgrades and closing cost credits can make a well-priced home even more attractive.
Plus, with mortgage rates at all-time lows and expected to rise, home affordability is may never be better.
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