Largest monthly percentage increase since July 2020

Washington –  Existing-home sales in the South rebounded 15.9% in Feb. from Jan. to an annual rate of 2.11 million, a 21.3% decrease from the prior year. The median price in the South was $342,000, an increase of 2.7% from one year ago. Sales reversed a 12-month slide in Feb. registering the largest monthly percentage increase since July 2020, according to the National Association of Realtors.

  • Existing-home sales jumped 14.5% in Feb.  to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.58 million, snapping a 12-month slide and representing the largest monthly percentage increase since July 2020 (+22.4%). Compared to one year ago, however, sales retreated 22.6%.
  • The median existing-home sales price decreased 0.2% from the previous year to $363,000.
  • The inventory of unsold existing homes was unchanged from the prior month at 980,000 at the end of Feb. or the equivalent of 2.6 months’ supply at the current monthly sales pace.

Month-over-month sales rose in all four major U.S. regions. All regions posted year-over-year declines. Total existing-home sales,, completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, vaulted 14.5% from Jan. to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.58 million in Feb.

Year-over-year, sales fell 22.6% (down from 5.92 million in February 2022).

“Conscious of changing mortgage rates, homebuyers are taking advantage of any rate declines,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “Moreover, we’re seeing stronger sales gains in areas where home prices are decreasing and the local economies are adding jobs.”

Total housing inventory registered at the end of Feb. was 980,000 units, identical to Jan. and up 15.3% from one year ago (850,000). Unsold inventory sits at a 2.6-month supply at the current sales pace, down 10.3% from Jan. but up from 1.7 months in Feb. 2022.

“Inventory levels are still at historic lows,” Yun added. “Consequently, multiple offers are returning on a good number of properties.”

Properties typically remained on the market for 34 days in Feb., up from 33 days in Jan.  and 18 days in Feb. 2022. Fifty-seven percent of homes sold in Feb. were on the market for less than a month. First-time buyers were responsible for 27% of sales in Feb., down from 31% in January and 29% in Feb. 2022. NAR’s 2022 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers, released in Nov. 2022, found that the annual share of first-time buyers was 26%, the lowest since NAR began tracking the data.

All-cash sales accounted for 28% of transactions in Feb., down from 29% in Jan. but up from 25% in Feb. 2022. Individual investors or second homebuyers, who make up many cash sales, purchased 18% of homes in Feb., up from 16% in Jan. but down from 19% in Feb. 2022.

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