Mon, 19 Nov 2012, 5:14am PST
The number of previously owned homes on the market decreased 1.4 percent to 2.14 million, the fewest since December 2002. At the current sales pace, it would take 5.4 months to sell those houses, the least since February 2006, and down from 5.6 months at the end of September.
Sales of existing single-family homes increased 1.9 percent to an annual rate of 4.22 million. Purchases of multifamily properties -- including condominiums -- rose to a 570,000 pace, the most since January 2011, from 550,000.
Purchases climbed in three of the four regions, reflecting a 4.4 percent increase in the West, a 2.1 percent gain in the South and a 1.8 percent rise in the Midwest. Demand fell 1.7 percent in the Northeast as superstorm Sandy disrupted the market, the agents’ group said.
“We anticipate more impact to be showing up in November and December,” Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said in a news conference as the figures were released.