According to the National Association of Realtors, condo sales fell 2% in September from August to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.96 million units. Sales were 15.4% lower than in September 2022.
This is the slowest sales pace since October 2010, during the Great Recession, when the market was in the midst of a foreclosure crisis. For comparison, just two years ago, when mortgage rates were around 3%, 6.6 million homes were sold. According to Mortgage News Daily, the average interest rate on 30-year fixed loans today is about 8%.
“As has been the case this year, limited inventory and low housing affordability continue to hinder home sales,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. “With inflation easing and job growth weaker, the Federal Reserve simply cannot raise interest rates any further.”
There were 1.13 million homes for sale at the end of September, down more than 8% from a year ago. Inventory is now at 3.4 months supply, which is slightly better than last year, but only because sales have fallen so sharply. The offer depends on the current sales pace.
In addition to higher mortgage rates, the average price of a home sold in September was $394,300, up 2.8% from a year ago. About 26% of homes sold above list price due to a lack of supply and bidding wars.
First-time buyers only accounted for 27% of sales. Historically, they account for about 40%.
While sales were lower across all price ranges, they fell the least at the high end. That’s because there’s more supply at higher prices, and high-end buyers often have cash to fall back on. According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, mortgage demand is currently at its lowest level since 1995.
Cash sales accounted for 29% of all transactions in September, up from 27% in August and up from 22% in September last year.
“Although affordability is a headwind, the renewed upward momentum that followed the Fed’s September forecasts may have prompted some buyers to head to the closing table to avoid being hit with higher mortgage rates and an even worse one in the coming months Affordability must be taken into account. If so, that could mean.” “There will be more of a lull in sales activity in the coming months,” Danielle Hale, chief economist at Realtor.com, said in a news release.
Clarification: This story has been updated to clarify that sales were down 15.4% compared to September 2022.
Source : www.cnbc.com