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Existing-home sales increased in April

Staff writer |
According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR) latest U.S. housing report, existing-home sales increased for the first time this year in April, while inventory meaningfully increased and home price growth moderated.

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Monthly sales gains in the West and South offset a modest decline in the Midwest while the Northeast was unchanged.

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 1.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.65 million in April from 4.59 million in March, but are 6.8 percent below the 4.99 million-unit level in April 2013.

Total housing inventory at the end of April jumped 16.8 percent to 2.29 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 5.9-month supply at the current sales pace, up from 5.1 months in March. Unsold inventory is 6.5 percent higher than a year ago, when there was a 5.2-month supply.

The median existing-home price for all housing types in April was $201,700, which is 5.2 percent above April 2013; in the first quarter the median price was 8.6 percent above a year earlier.

Ten percent of April sales were foreclosures, and 5 percent were short sales. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 16 percent below market value in April, while short sales were discounted 10 percent.


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