According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), severely lacking housing inventory levels across the country pinched sales growth and kept home prices rising at a steady clip in nearly all metro areas in the third quarter of 2017.
The national median existing single-family home price in the third quarter was $254,000, which is up 5.3% from the third quarter of 2016 ($241,300).
Single-family home prices last quarter increased in 92% of measured markets, with 162 out of 177 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) showing sales price gains in the third quarter compared with the third quarter of 2016. Only 15 areas (8%) recorded lower median prices from a year earlier.
However, Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, says the housing market’s performance during the third quarter was underwhelming: “The stock market’s climb to new record highs, the continued stretch of outstanding job growth and mortgage rates under 4% kept homebuyer demand at a very robust level throughout the summer. Unfortunately, the pace of new listings were unable to replace what was quickly sold. Home shoppers had little to choose from, and many had out outbid others in order to close on a home. The end result was a slowdown in sales from earlier in the year, steadfast price growth and weakening affordability conditions.”