Home sales are expected to continue on an uptrend with an expected 9% increase in 2013, according to estimates released this week by the National Association of Realtors.
Pending home sales, tracked by NAR, fell in December from 106.3 to 101.7 on the association’s index scale but maintain a lead over year-ago sales which as continued for 20 consecutive months. Further, says NAR, sales will rise in the coming year on buyer interest and more available inventory of housing.
“The supply limitation appears to be the main factor holding back contract signings in the past month,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. “Still, contract activity has risen for 20 straight months on a year-over-year basis,” he said. “Buyer interest remains solid, as evidenced by a separate Realtor® survey which shows that buyer foot traffic is easily outpacing seller traffic.”
A seller’s market may be developing, Yun said, as more buyers enter the market in some areas.
“Supplies of homes costing less than $100,000 are tight in much of the country, especially in the West, so first-time buyers have fewer options,” he said. “We expect a seasonal rise of inventory in the spring to help, but a seller’s market may be developing. Much of the West is already a seller’s market for homes priced under a million dollars, but conditions are much more balanced in the Northeast.”
NAR estimates pending home sales to rise 9% in 2013 based on favorable affordability conditions as well as pent up demand.
Written by Elizabeth Ecker