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Existing home sales in August were down 0.7% from July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.04 million, according to data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Year-over-year, sales dropped by 15.3% from the 4.77 million recorded in August 2022.

While sales were down, prices were up. The median existing-home price for all housing types in August was $407,100, an increase of 3.9% from the $391,700 in August 2022. Total housing inventory by the end of August was 1.1 million units, 14.1% below the 1.28 million level from one year earlier.

“Home sales have been stable for several months, neither rising nor falling in any meaningful way,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun, who noted that prices “continue to march higher despite lower home sales. Supply needs to essentially double to moderate home price gains.”

Yun added, “Mortgage rate changes will have a big impact over the short run, while job gains will have a steady, positive impact over the long run. The South had a lighter decline in sales from a year ago due to greater regional job growth since coming out of the pandemic lockdown.”

First-time buyers were responsible for 29% of sales in August, down from 30% in July and identical to August 2022. All-cash sales accounted for 27% of transactions in August, up from 26% in July and 24% in August 2022. And distressed sales represented 1% of sales in August, unchanged from the previous month and the previous year.

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