New Home Sales Jump

(Illustration courtesy of U.S. Census Bureau and HUD)

Sales of new single‐family houses jumped in September to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 759,000, the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development reported Wednesday.

This represents a 12.3% increase from the revised August rate of 676,000 and is 33.9% above the September 2022 estimate of 567,000.

Doug Duncan, Chief Economist at Fannie Mae, Washington, D.C., noted the new home sales figure represent the highest level since February 2022. “This was above our expectation, and points to continued resilience in the new home sales market,” he said. “The series is notoriously volatile, however, with September’s gain following a decline of 8.2 percent in August.”

HUD and the Census Bureau noted the median sales price of new houses sold in September equaled $418,800. The average sales price was $503,900. The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of September was 435,000, which represents a 6.9-month supply at the current sales rate.

Duncan said the year-over-year change in the median sales price of negative 12.3% was the largest decline since February 2009. “Though this measure does not consider changes in the geographic mix of sales, it is consistent with homebuilders offering larger concessions to drive sales and further changing the mix of homes being offered to more modest products,” he said. “However, with mortgage rates continuing to rise and homebuilder optimism surveys softening, we expect new sales to soften over the remainder of the year.”