Friday, January 27, 2006

December Homes Sales

December Homes Sales Data Down; 2005 Homes Sales Set Record

Here is a report of the continuing mixed messages from the media on home sales across the nation. On the one side, we see “RECORD SETTING HOMES SALES” for the year as headlined in the USA Today newspapers. On the other hand, we are seeing the focus on the December reports which are showing a decline in existing home sales of 5.7%. As I’ve stated in my previous blog posts, this news to me is good news for the overall national economy, as the trends which were artificially escalating home prices have begun to wane, and the industry is (I hope) beginning to settle into a more ‘normal’ pace of growth for the year.

Here is a partial article published by the National Association of Home Builders on the annual 2005 stats and the December reports for existing home sales. For a link to the article see below and as always, if you are looking for a real estate professional of choice in the City of Chicago, Don't Forget to Remember Jim!

(January 25, 2006) -- Existing-home sales declined in December but easily set an annual record, according to the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®.There were 7.07 million existing-home sales in all of 2005, up 4.2 percent from 6.78 million in 2004. This is the fifth consecutive annual record; NAR began tracking the sales series in 1968.However, total existing-home sales for December — including single-family, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops — were down 5.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.60 million units from an upwardly revised pace of 7.00 million in November. Sales were 3.1 percent lower than a 6.81 million-unit level in December 2004.David Lereah, NAR’s chief economist, expected the monthly sales decline. “This is part of the market adjustment we’ve been discussing, with a soft landing in sight for the housing sector,” he says. “The level of home sales activity is now at a sustainable level, and is likely to pick up a bit in the months ahead. Overall fundamentals remain solid, driven by population and employment growth as well as favorable affordability conditions in most of the country, so we expect the housing market to remain historically high but lower than last year’s record.”

For a full view of the NAR article click here

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