Existing-Home Prices Up 7.4 Percent in the Midwest

Existing-home sales continued their string of yearly increases in April.

Existing-home sales in the Midwest increased 1.0 percent from March to April, according to the latest data from NAR, with a yearly increase of 14.4 percent.

Nationally, sales were similarly strong, rising 3.4 percent from March and 10.0 percent from April, providing perhaps the most compelling argument yet for a real estate recovery.

That was definitely the opinion of Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist.

“It is no longer just the investors who are taking advantage of high affordability conditions.  A return of normal home buying for occupancy is helping home sales across all price points, and now the recovery appears to be extending to home prices,” he said.

Here were some other important details in the report:

  • Housing inventory rose 9.5 percent to a 6.6-month supply, but is still 20.6 percent below a year ago when there was a 9.1-month supply. Bill McBride of Calculated Risk notes, “This is the fourteenth consecutive month with a YoY decrease in inventory.”
  • Median price for existing-homes jumped 10.1 percent year-over-year to $177,400 in April, and March was upwardly revised by 3.1 percent. “This is the first time we’ve had back-to-back price increases from a year earlier since June and July of 2010 when the gains were less than one percent,” Yun said. The median price in the Midwest was $141,400, up 7.4 percent from a year ago, and for the South, the $153,400 was up 8.0 percent.
  • Single-family home sales rose 3.0 percent from March and 9.9 percent from last year.  The single-family home price, at $178,000, was 10.4 percent higher from April 2011.
All in all, it looks like the best indicator yet for a new dawn in housing. After jumps in builder confidence and many positive signs for agents, things are definitely looking up.
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