Although mortgage rates are climbing to a vertigo-inducing 8% level and home prices remain at historic highs, Americans are out buying new single-family houses with gusto.
According to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, sales of new single‐family houses in September were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 759,000 – up by a significant 12.3% from the revised August rate of 676,000 and up by a staggering 33.9% from the September 2022 estimate of 567,000.
However, the bulk of activity was focused in the South (with 456,000 houses sold last month) and the West (with 187,000). Activity was considerably less corybantic in the East (49,000) and the Midwest (67,000).
The median sales price of new houses sold in September 2023 was $418,800 while the average sales price was $503,900. The seasonally‐adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of September was 435,000, which represents a supply of 6.9 months at the current sales rate.