Existing Home Sales Fell Again as Prices Rise and Inventory Remains Very Low

Sales of existing homes decreased 2.7 percent in March, to a 5.77 million seasonally adjusted annual rate. Sales are down 4.5 percent from a year ago.

Sales in the market for existing single-family homes, which account for about 89 percent of total existing-home sales, also dropped 2.7 percent in March, coming in at a 5.13 million seasonally adjusted annual rate (see first chart). From a year ago, sales are down 3.8 percent. Single-family sales were at their slowest pace since June 2020.

The single-family segment saw sales decline in three of the four regions. Sales fell 4.1 percent in the Midwest, 3.5 percent in the Northeast, the smallest region by volume, and 2.9 percent in the South, the largest region by volume while sales were unchanged in the West. Measured from a year ago, sales are also down in all four regions (-12.7 percent in the Northeast, -4.5 percent in the West, -3.3 percent in the Midwest, and -1.3 percent in the South).

Condo and co-op sales fell 3.0 percent for the month, leaving sales at a 640,000 annual rate for the month versus 660,000 in February (see first chart). From a year ago, condo and co-op sales were off 9.9 percent and are at their slowest pace since August 2020. Condo and co-op sales were down in two regions in March, -14.3 percent in the Midwest and -3.3 percent in the South but unchanged in the Northeast and in the West.  From a year ago, sales are off in three regions (-14.7 percent in the South, -7.7 percent in the Northeast, and -6.7 percent in the West) but unchanged in the Midwest.

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