Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Existing Home Sales Report: September 2007

Today, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) released their Existing Home Sales Report for September showing, perfectly clearly, that demand for residential real estate has now taken a new leg down uniformly across the nation’s housing markets likely as a direct result of the significant structural changes that have taken place in the credit-mortgage markets.

Within the release, Senior Economist Lawrence Yun now attempts to persuade readers that, although the changes in the mortgage market have been significant and are having an impact on sales, this is merely a temporary situation that is likely to resolve shortly.

“The good news is that mortgage availability has markedly improved in recent weeks with interest rates on jumbo loans falling, and more people are applying for safer and conforming FHA mortgage products. Some of the cancelled transactions will move forward as buyers apply for other loans.”

Additionally, NAR President Pat Vredevoogd Combs continues her absurd attempts to support her trade association by suggesting that if a buyer feels unsure about the conditions in the housing market, they should consult with a realtor.

“Because local conditions vary widely, it’s important for consumers to understand the fundamentals of what’s going on in their area. To sort through the factors in a particular neighborhood, both buyers and sellers should consult with a Realtor to help them navigate the current local market.”

Today’s report is truly stark and provides total confirmation that the nation’s housing markets have now taken a new leg down with EVERY region showing significant double digit declines to sales of BOTH single family and condos as well as large increases to inventory and an explosion in monthly supply as a result of the collapsing pace of sales.

Keep in mind that these declines are coming “on the back” of last year’s fairly dramatic declines further indicating that the housing markets are truly in the process of a tremendous correction.

Below is a chart consolidating all the year-over-year changes reported by NAR in their September 2007 report.

Particularly notable are the following:

  • Sales are down significantly in EVERY region and for BOTH single family and condo.
  • ALL Inventory and Months Supply show significant increases on a year-over-year basis.