Economists' Outlook

Housing stats and analysis from NAR's research experts.

October 2022 Pending Home Sales Decline as Qualifying for a Home Becomes More Difficult

NAR released a summary of pending home sales data showing that October’s pending home sales pace weakened by 4.6% last month and fell 37.0% from a year ago.

Bar graph: Pending Home Sales Index, October 2021 to October 2022

Pending sales represent homes that have a signed contract to purchase on them but have yet to close. They tend to lead existing-home sales data by 1 to 2 months.

All of the four regions showed double-digit declines from a year ago. The West had the largest dip of 46.2%, followed by the South with a drop in contract signings of 38.2%. The Midwest fell 32.1%, followed by the Northeast, with the smallest decline of 29.5%.

Bar graph: October U.S. and Regional Pending Sales, 2022 and 2021

From last month, all four regions showed reductions in contract signings. The West had the largest dip of 11.3%, followed by the South with a decrease of 6.4%. The Northeast had a drop of 4.3%, followed by the Midwest had the smallest decline of 3.3%.

The U.S. pending home sales index level for the month of October was 77.1. September’s pending sales figures were revised to 80.8.

October’s contract signings bring the pending index below the 100-level mark for the seventh consecutive month.

The 100 level is based on a 2001 benchmark and is consistent with existing-home sales above the 5 million mark.

Line graph: U.S. and Regional Pending Home Sales Index, January 2019 to October 2022