Pending Home Sales Better than Expected:
Pending Home Sales in November (signed purchase contracts that are not yet closed) were much stronger than expected (+0.2% vs market expectations of -0.5%) on a month-over-month basis.
The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, rose 0.2 percent to 109.5 in November from 109.3 in October. With last monthYs increase, the index remains at its highest reading since June (110.0), and is now 0.8 percent above a year ago.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says contract signings mustered a small gain in November and were up annually for the first time since June. YThe housing market is closing the year on a stronger note than earlier this summer, backed by solid job creation and an economy that has kicked into a higher gear,Y he said. YHowever, new buyers coming into the market are finding out quickly that their options are limited and competition is robust. RealtorsY say many would-be buyers from earlier this year, stifled by tight supply and higher prices, are still trying to buy a home.Y
YThe strengthening economy, and expectation that more millennials will want to buy, serve as promising signs for solid homebuying demand next year, while also putting additional pressure on inventory levels and affordability,Y said Yun.
Source: National Association of Realtors