Slowest home sales in over three years could help buyers this spring

  • Sales of existing homes fell 1.2 percent to their lowest level in three years compared with December and were a wider 8.5 percent lower annually.
  • Real estate agents and analysts have long been blaming weak sales on too few listings and rising rates, but supply has been rising steadily for several months and rates have been falling.
  • Lower mortgage rates, combined with slower home price appreciation, are bringing the housing market out of its recent overheating and into a more moderate environment with respect to the rest of the economy.
  • U.S. home sales fell in January to their lowest level in more than three years and house prices rose only modestly.
  • The National Association of Realtors said on Thursday existing home sales dropped 1.2 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.94 million units last month.
  • That was the lowest level since November 2015 and well below analysts’ expectations of a rate of 5.0 million units.