Greetings on a chilly Chicago night!
Across the U.S., it appears that sales of new homes is on the rise! In February, sales of new homes rose 4.7% versus January, to an annualized rate of 337,000 units.
Sounds encouraging, yes? Well, not completely!
As summarized in Kelly Evans' article in today's Wall Street Journal, the median sales price for a new home was $200,900 last month, compared to $251,000 in February, 2008. Last month, nationwide, the median price of a home resale was $165,400.
Indeed, many builders are scaling back features and amenities on their new homes, in an attempt to make them compete more strongly with lower-priced existing inventory - much of which is being sold at fire-sale prices in short sale or foreclosure.
There is renewed buyer activity on newly-built homes, as the $8,000 First Time Homebuyer Credit, coupled with very low interest rates, have lured some buyers to write offers to purchase. But the number of new homes on the market is at a seven-year-low 330,000 units for sale. Most builders are building fewer true new homes, instead trying to unload unsold inventory piled up for many months of sluggish interest and activity.
A signal for a housing market turnaround? An encouraging sign, perhaps - but not necessarily the absolute signal!
Please see our post today via BlogChicagoHomes.com.
DEAN & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO