Existing Home Sales In February Hit One-Year High

March 21, 2024

Housing demand has been on a steady rise due to population and job growth, though the actual timing of purchases will be determined by prevailing mortgage rates and wider inventory choices.

National Association of Realtors chief economist Lawrence Yun in Thursday’s news release on U.S. existing-home sales data for February. The monthly increase of existing-home sales between January and February shows the highest month-to-month increase since February 2023.

Why It Matters: U.S. existing home sales account for the largest portion of the U.S. housing market. Thursday’s data from National Association of Realtors (NAR) shows that existing home sales hit a one-year high in February despite elevated mortgage rates. Yun says, “What happened in the past two years when we had a historically low inventory level is that many people who would have moved in normal circumstances just delayed. They said ‘I have my 3% mortgage rate, I don’t want to give it up,’ so many people simply delayed. But they can no longer delay.”

The Numbers: In February, home sales increased 9.5% with a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.38 million units – marking the second consecutive month of increased sales. While sales were up on a monthly basis in February, they decreased 3.3% year-over-year.

Read More: US existing home sales rise to one-year high in February (Reuters)

US homes sales surged last month despite highest February prices on record (CNN)

by Emily Hooker, based in Texas