The April figures for sales of existing homes are in, and the news isn’t so great for sellers. April sales were down 2.6%, following a March drop of 7.9% from February. According to figures from the National Association of Realtors, April sales declined 10.7% from the year ago period.
While figures on sales of active adult and retirement community homes and condominiums are hard to come by, it stands to reason that the overall market weakness is also having a negative affect on this segment. But for baby boomers considering purchasing a new home, the news is probably positive. Continued pressure on sellers and greater inventories should mean price flexibility and better selection. Is the time to buy nearing?
The inventory of unsold homes is piling up and now stands at 8.4 months worth of supply – the highest level in 15 years. That increased inventory is apparently affecting prices, which declined a slight 0.2% vs. April 2006. Experts interviewed in the Wall Street Journal predicted that the double whammy of increasing inventories and slowing sales will mean even more pressure on prices in the months to come.
As one expert called it in the New York Times, “the market is lousy”. It appears that the nation’s sub-prime credit pricing woes are a new drag on the real estate market.
Sales of new homes increased 16% in April over March while prices dropped. But experts point out that new home sales are just a small part of the overall market, about 15%. Recent earnings reports from the nation’s big builders have been dismal as well.
Sales in the Northeast showed the biggest sales declines (-8.8%) and the south had the smallest (-1.2%). To find a list of cities organization by state, go to the best reviews of retirement communities.