Friday, June 3, 2011

Pending home sales fall in West

Pending home sales in the western US fell in April by 16.9 percent year over year, according to new data released last week by the National Association of Realtors.

The pending home sales index for the western region of the US, which includes Colorado, fell to 89.1 from 107.2, while the national index fell 26 percent from 111.5 to 81.9 year over year.

All regions of the country showed declines in pending home sales. The decline from April 2010 to April 2011 reflects the very high number of pending home sales reported in April 2010 as buyers rushed to put homes under contract in time to take advantage of the home buyer tax credit which ended in April 2010. As can be seen in the graph, April 2010 shows inflated pending home sales totals due to the tax credit.

So, a year-over-year decline was expected for April.

The west showed the smallest decrease in the index among all regions, however, the index level for the West in April was at a new low for the past year, and it was lower than the annualized index levels for 2008, 2009 and 2010. The index has tended to grow in most regions of the country over the past year, yet in the west, pending home sales have been falling off.

The West region continues to be impacted by lackluster conditions for home sales in Arizona, Nevada and California.