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We want to be a one-stop home buying resource for you, and one way we’re doing this, is by providing helpful tips and information about the mortgage industry, buying and selling your home – and many other useful topics that you’ll likely encounter on your path to home ownership. We’re confident that you’ll learn something new every time you visit this page.

August home sales remained unchanged; home construction completions increased

August home sales remained unchanged; home construction completions increased

After several months of decline, existing-home sales held steady in August, according to data collected by the National Association of Realtors. There was a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.34 million homes sold in August, the same as July.

Though there was no month-over-month change, August's rate was 1.5 percent lower than August 2017. Additionally, pending home sales decreased year-over-year for the eighth-straight month. The Pending Home Sales Index ended the month at 104.2, a 2.3 percent annual decline. The index is down from 106.1 in July, according to NAR.

Meanwhile, new home sales increased to 629,000, up from 608,000 in July, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. At the end of the month, the new home inventory was at a 6.1-month supply (318,000), while existing home inventory was at a 4.3-month supply (1.92 million).

Price fluctuations lead buyers to hold off

As home sales fall, prices have gone up. The median existing-home sales price in August was $264,800, a 4.6 percent increase over a year ago. This marked 78 consecutive months, or six and a half years, of year-over-year increases. New home sales prices decreased, but remain significantly above the typical cost of an existing home. The median new home sale price was $320,200, down from $328,100 in July.

A home on a corner has a white picket fence surrounding the front yard.New home sales increased while existing-home sales were unchanged in August.

Though rising home prices may appear to be bad news for prospective buyers, NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun believes there's hope for the future.

"With prices having risen so quickly, many consumers were deciding to wait to list their homes hoping to see additional price and equity gains," he said in a press release. "However, with indications that buyers are beginning to pull out, price gains are going to decelerate and potential sellers are considering that now is a good time to list and bring more properties to the market."

Home construction picks up

The introduction of new homes to the market isn't solely the work of home sellers. New home construction can also ease low inventory pains. There were 1.21 million privately owned housing completions in August, according to a news release from the U.S. Census Bureau. This marked a 2.5 percent increase from July and is 11.2 percent higher than August 2017.

Housing starts also increased, with 1.28 million projects breaking ground in August, a 9.2 percent increase over a month prior. Future projects could take a dip, though: Building permits authorized in August decreased 5.7 percent from July to a rate of 1.23 million.

Prospective homebuyers or home builders typically seek out home loans before seeking out properties. To learn about the mortgage options available to you, reach out to The Federal Savings Bank.