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June Home Sales Surge to Highest Level in 8 Years: Report

Image: June Home Sales Surge to Highest Level in 8 Years: Report
In this July 10, 2014 photo, a mailman delivers mail to a house for sale in Quincy, Massachusetts. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

By    |   Thursday, 23 Jul 2015 02:37 PM

June existing-home sales have surged to their highest level in eight years amid rising demand, limited supply, and news that median home prices reached an all-time high.

The National Association of Realtors reported Wednesday that all major U.S. regions experienced sales gains in the first month of summer, with total existing-home sales increasing 3.2 percent to a seasonally-adjusted 5.45 million sales.

That news put home sales at the highest pace since February 2007, the association said, following a trend of increasing year-over-year for nine consecutive months.

"Buyers have come back in force, leading to the strongest past two months in sales since early 2007," NAR chief economic Lawrence Yun said in the release. "This wave of demand is being fueled by a year-plus of steady job growth and an improving economy that's giving more households the financial wherewithal and incentive to buy."

On Thursday, the home-sales news was followed by NAR reports that the median existing-home price in June of $236,400 was a record high, above the previous peak in 2006 and 6.5 percent above the same time in 2014.

Yun attributed some of the sales spike to rising mortgage rates in June, which typically pushes some buyers to move quickly.

"We’re getting ready to embark on one of the strongest bursts in activity in the housing market that we’ve seen since the recession ended, " Mark Vitner, senior economist at Wells Fargo Securities in Charlotte, North Carolina, told Bloomberg News. "I’m very optimistic about housing in the second half of the year."

Federal officials attribute the strong housing market to an equally strong job market, with the unemployment rate at 5.3 percent, often considered full employment, Bloomberg said. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen told Congress last week that homebuilding also had increased, although fewer mortgage loans continued to keep some people out of the market.

Market statistics are monitored closely by federal officials as considerations are made to increase the Federal Reserve benchmark rates, Bloomberg said.

Good news about home sales hit social media from across the country:


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June existing-home sales have surged to their highest level in eight years amid rising demand, limited supply, and news that median home prices reached an all-time high.
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2015-37-23
Thursday, 23 Jul 2015 02:37 PM
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