Pending home sales in the western US in October rose 6.6 percent year over year, according to new pending home sales data released today by the National Association of Realtors. According to the press release:
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said improved contract activity is a hopeful sign. “Home sales have been plodding along at a sub-par level while interest rates are hovering at record lows and there is a pent-up demand from buyers who normally would have entered the market in recent years. We hope this is indicates more buyers are taking advantage of the excellent affordability conditions,” he said.
The pending home sales index for the western region of the US, which includes Colorado, rose from 105.3 to 112.3, year over year, while the national index rose 7.3 percent from 84.0 to 90.1, year over year.
All regions of the country showed gains in pending home sales, year over year.
Month to month, the pending home sales index fell 5.0 percent in the West and rose 8.3 percent nationally. The west was the only region to report a month-to-month decline in pending sales although sales activity tends to generally fall from September to October.
The West showed the second-smallest increase in the index among all regions, after the Northeast which showed an increase of 1.5 percent. The Midwest showed the biggest gains with a year-over-year increase of 10.8 percent.
Pending home sales help us predict future closings, so this news suggests that closings in November may be stronger in 2011 in the year-over-year comparisons.
An analysis of 12-month moving averages for home sales closings through September in Colorado showed an ongoing and slow decline of overall sales activity in the state. See here for more. The statewide data has shown more weakness in home sales activity than has the regional NAR data in recent months.