New Home Sales Drop, But Not From Us

The sales of new homes across the country last month fell by more than they have in over a year, but the region in which Chicago real estate lies is not responsible for the decline.
According to the Commerce Department, new U.S. single-family home sales in June fell 8.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 350,000 units. That is the lowest rate in five months and the biggest percentage decline in new-home sales since February of 2011.
But if we take apart the numbers regionally, you’ll see that the decline came from the Northeast region, not Chicago’s Midwest.
*Midwest: New-home sales in June rose 14.6 percent.
*West: New-home sales increased 2.1 percent in June.
*South: New-home sales fell 8.6 percent last month.
*Northeast: New-home sales plummeted a whopping 60 percent in June.
Despite the uneven numbers across the country, new-home sales in June were still up 15.1 percent over sales in June of 2011.
“While we would have liked to see a third consecutive month of new-home sales gains in June, the fact remains that the sales numbers are up on both a quarterly and yearly basis, while builders continue to report that they are seeing more serious buyers in the market for a newly constructed home with all of the latest updates,” said Barry Rutenberg, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).
The inventory of new U.S. homes for sale increased a mere 0.7 percent to 144,000 in June and remains near record lows.
“The lower number of new-home sales in June represents an adjustment from a robust level of activity in May, yet overall results for the second quarter show we are still on track for continued improvement,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.
“That said, the very tight inventory of new homes for sale at this time poses a challenge to builders, who’d like to have a larger selection for buyers to choose from but continue to confront issues with obtaining credit to build viable new projects.”