New Home Sales Fall in January

Sales of newly built, single-family homes fell 7.8 percent in January to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 593,000 units after an upwardly revised December reading, according to newly released data by HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau.

“New home sales have taken a pause this month, but our builders are reporting confidence in the overall market and future sales conditions,” said National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Chairman Randy Noel. “With strong consumer demand for housing, we expect the sales numbers to move forward in the months ahead.”

Inventory of new homes for sale in January was 301,000, equal to a 6.1-month supply at the current sales pace. The median sales price of new houses sold was $323,000.

“The moderation in new home sales may be attributable to the interest rate environment, which could be causing short-term market volatility,” said NAHB Senior Economist Michael Neal. “However, the underlying economic fundamentals for housing demand remain strong and we expect more prospective home buyers to enter the market in 2018.”

Regionally, new home sales rose 15.4 percent in the Midwest and 1 percent in the West. Sales decreased 14.2 percent in the South and 33.3 percent in the Northeast.