Existing Home Sales in March were up 1.1 percent, stronger than expectations of a slight decline. Unfortunately, this good news comes with a double-edged sword: despite being the second consecutive monthly gain, low inventory persists and is keeping sales below last year’s level. Though there was over a 5 percent increase in inventory from the previous month, buyers are feeling the pressure, especially in the lower end of the market where demand is the strongest. While first-time homebuyers and millennials are making up a lot of the foot traffic, they’re being “priced out” of the market from others looking at the same homes. It’s not necessarily that they can’t afford to purchase a home but rather there’s not enough homes in that price range to meet all the demand, and this demand is consistently contributing to solid builder confidence. Fourteen states saw an increase in affordability compared to a year ago.
Akron, Ohio is seeing almost 21 percent of homes selling above list price, with the medium home list price at $150K and winning the No. 1 spot for housing market where bidding wars are heating up.
Flint, MI posted some of the biggest price gains over the last year.
Housing Starts and Housing Permits for March were both up, with a much stronger report than expected. However, the gain was entirely due to multi-family while single-family fell in both reports.