Posted on Tuesday, January 26, 2010
While existing home sales fell 16.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.45 million units in December from 6.54 million units in November, sales remained 15 percent above the 4.74 million-unit level of December 2008. There were 5,156,000 existing-home sales for all of 2009, a 4.9 percent jump from the annual sales recorded in 2008. In December, the national median existing-home price for all housing types was $178,300, 1.5 percent higher than December 2008. Thanks to the sale of some higher priced homes. While the median existing-home price increased in December, the median price for all of 2009 did not. The annual median price last year was $173,500, down 12.4 percent from $198,100 in 2008. This can be attributed to distressed sales. Distressed sales accounted for 32 percent of sales in December and 36 percent of total sales in 2009.
At the end of December, total housing inventory fell 6.6 percent to 3.29 million existing homes available for sale. At the current sales pace, this represents a 7.2 month supply, up from a 6.5 month supply in November. At the lowest level since March 2006, raw, unsold inventory was 11.1 percent below December 2008 and was 28.2 percent below the record of 4.58 million in July 2008.