New Home Sales Continued to Decline in August

The U.S. Department of Commerce released their new home sales data for August 2011 this morning. Here’s your Cheat Sheet:

Sales: Sales of new single-family houses in August 2011 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 295,000.

Month-over-Month Change: This is 2.3% below the revised July 2011 rate of 302,000.

Year-over-Year Change: This is 6.1% above the August 2010 estimate of 278,000.

Prices: The median sales price of new houses sold in August 2011 was $209,100; the average sales price was $246,000. The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of August was 162,000.

Inventory: This represents a supply of 6.6 months at the current sales rate.

Commentary: Builders are becoming less inclined to start new projects when there are so many cheaper, pre-existing homes flooding the market, as new foreclosures are being added to the market every day. And with unemployment still high, low mortgage rates are unlikely to prove a resolution to that problem. However, despite the month-to-month decline in sales, new home sales have consistently remained higher this year than they were last year.

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