Your Weekly Update on the Housing Situation

The median sales price of new houses sold in December was $248,900, while the average sales price was $304,000. The median sales price was $245,600 in November 2012. Two-thousand new homes were sold in the $500,000 or more categories, the same as December 2011.

Low inventory levels continue to aid prices. At the end of December, a seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale was 151,000, representing a supply of 4.9 months at the current sales rate. This is the lowest supply since April 2012.

The report echoes a report earlier in the week from the Federal Housing Finance Agency, which showed that home prices increased 0.6 percent in November from October. For the 12 months ending in November, U.S. prices gained 5.6 percent. The FHFA index is back to 2004 levels, but still remains 15.2 percent below its April 2007 bubble peak. Zillow also said that national home values increased 5.9 percent last year.

Here’s how top homebuilders reacted to the fresh news…