According to the March 2011 report issued by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), existing home sales rose 3.7% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.1M in March from the 4.92M in February. These sales consist of closed transactions of single-family residences, townhouses, condos and co-ops.
Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist added, “existing home sales have risen in six of the past eight months, so we’re clearly on a recovery path, with rising jobs and excellent affordability conditions, we project moderate improvements into 2012, but not every month will show again – primarily because some buyers are finding it too difficult to obtain a mortgage. For those fortunate enough to qualify for financing, monthly mortgage payments as a percent of income have been at record lows.”
Mr. Yun is referring to NAR’s housing affordability index which currently indicates principal and interest for the purchase of a median-priced existing home is only 13% of the current gross household income which is the lowest rate since 1970 when NAR began monitoring the index.
Yet another reason to prove the timing is right to purchase a home – now if only the banks would get on board!