Pending-home sales fell 4.7%. That is the lowest reading since October of 2014, and the biggest monthly decline since 2010, as the recovery from the 2008 mortgage crisis was just getting started.
What happened: The NAR’s “Index Of Pending Home Sales”, which keeps track of real-estate transactions (in which a contract has been signed but the transaction hasn’t closed), had been slowing rising. But December’s reading was revised down, and the index is now 3.8% below year-ago levels.
The big picture: The NAR called the lack of housing market inventory a “crisis” when it reported on existing-home sales in January. Realtors are seeing a lot of traffic, even as the number of available listings at the end of January was at an all-time low for the month and 9.5% lower than a year ago, a number it called “startling.”
Contract signings precede sales by about 45 to 60 days, so the January figures don’t bode well for February sales data, nor the overall economy. Sales throughout 2017 were only 1.1% higher than in 2016, and the Realtors expect the recent tax-law changes to take a bite out of sales in 2018.
All regions had declines in January: sales were down 9% in the Northeast, 6.6% in the Midwest, 3.9% in the South and 1.2% in the West.
Its a tough market in Washington state. Getting your foot in the door in an area you’re looking at purchasing a home in seems to be getting harder and harder for a lot people. Fortunately, Steve Gilbert can help you get as prepared as possible to make an offer on property, and get you the best rates possible on a new home loan. Get in contact with us at Seattle Mortgage Brokers today to get started! Steve Gilbert – 206-992-5635 – Steve@SeattleLoanBrokers.com
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