Record High Home Prices Lead to 4% Drop in Pending Sales

A 4% Decline in Pending Sales Follows a Surge in Home Prices to Record Highs

Prices continue to rise due to this spring’s lower-than-usual inventory. The slight silver lining for buyers is that mortgage rates have decreased slightly.

The median U.S. home sale price reached a record $387,600 during the four weeks ending May 19, up 4% from a year earlier. Weekly average mortgage rates dipped to 7.02% from a five-month high of 7.22% at the beginning of the month, bringing the median monthly housing payment to $2,854, just $20 less than April’s all-time high.

High housing costs led to a 4.2% year-over-year decline in pending home sales, the largest drop in three months (except for the previous 4-week period, which saw a 4.4% decline). Prices are rising despite falling sales because there aren’t enough homes on the market:

High Home Prices in the US

New listings are up about 8% year-over-year, but inventory remains below typical spring levels. Many homeowners are staying put to keep their relatively low mortgage rates rather than upgrading to a bigger or better home.

“Move-up buyers feel stuck because they’re ready for their next house, but it doesn’t make financial sense to sell with current interest rates so high,” said Sam Brinton, a Redfin Premier agent in Salt Lake City, UT.

“Homeowners listing now are often doing so out of necessity: One client is selling due to a family emergency, and another couple because they had a baby and need more space. Buyers should note that many of today’s sellers are motivated; if a home doesn’t have other offers, consider offering below the asking price and/or requesting concessions, as many sellers are open to negotiation.”

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