Economists' Outlook

Housing stats and analysis from NAR's research experts.

September 2020 Existing Home Sales Rise to 6.5 Million

NAR released a summary of existing-home sales data showing that housing market activity this September rose 9.4% from August 2020. September’s existing-home sales reached a 6.54 million seasonally adjusted annual rate. September’s sales of existing homes jumped 21% from September 2019.

Line graph: U.S. Existing-Home Sales, September 2019 to September 2020

The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $311,800 in September, up 14.8 % percent from a year ago.  The median price has reached an all-time high. Home prices have continued to escalate, and this marks the 103rd consecutive month of year-over-year gains.

Bar chart: Sales Price of EHS, September 2020 and September 2019

Regionally, all four regions showed double-digit price growth from a year ago. The Northeast had the largest gain of 17.8% followed by the West with an incline of 17.1%. The Midwest showed an increase of 14.8% and the South had the smallest price gain of 13.0% from September 2019.

September’s inventory figures fell 1.3% from last month standing at 1.47 million homes for sale. Compared with September of 2019, inventory levels dropped 19.2%. This would mark 16 straight months of year-over-year declines. It will take 2.7 months to move the current level of inventory at the current sales pace.

It takes approximately 21 days for a home to go from listing to a contract in the current housing market. A year ago, it took 32 days.

Bar chart: Inventory, September 2019 to September 2020

From August 2020, all of the four had gains in sales. The Northeast had the largest gain of 16.2% followed by the West with an incline of 9.6%. The South had an increase of 8.5% and the Midwest had a gain of 7.1%.

From a year ago, all four regions showed inclines in sales. The Northeast region had the largest gain of 22.9%. The South had an increase in sales of 22.3% followed by the Midwest with a rise of 19.8%. The Northeast had the smallest gain of 18.1%.

The South led all regions in percentage of national sales, accounting for 42.8% of the total, while the Northeast had the smallest share at 13.1%.

Bar chart: Regional Existing Home Sales and Year Over Year Percent Change, September 2020 and September 2019

In September, single-family sales were up 9.7% and condominiums sales were up 6.3% compared to last month. Single-family home sales were up 21.8% while condominium sales were up 13.6% compared to a year ago. Single-family homes had an increase in price up 15.2% at $316,200 and condominiums rose 9.9% at $272,700 from September 2019.

Line graph: Single Family vs Condo Price Year Over Year Percent Change, January 2019 to September 2020
Line graph: Single Family vs Condo Sales Month Over Month Percent Change, January 2019 to September 2020

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