Big dip in pending sales hasn’t touched prices

National housing market activity was down significantly in March, according to the National Association of Realtors.

The association’s Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, decreased 20.8% over the month of March. The decrease was a little less dramatic year over year, with contract signings down 16.3% compared to March 2019.

With the current index at 88.2, activity is well below the baseline of 100, which is equal to the level of contract activity in 2001.

Credit: NAR’s Pending Home Sales Index for March 2020 Each of the four national regions examined by NAR saw decreases in activity. In the Northeast, pending home sales were down 14.5% in March, which represented an 11% drop year over year. NAR characterized the decrease as “expected” in the face of the nearly national shutdown due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

“The housing market is temporarily grappling with the coronavirus-induced shutdown, which pulled down new listings and new contracts,” NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said in a press release. While Yun noted that the dip is likely temporary, it will have a long-term effect on overall activity in 2020, which is why the association is projecting home sales will decline 14% for the … Read More

Article From: "Meg White"   Read full article

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