The National Association of REALTORS did all of us a favor by coordinating and consolidating pending and existing price indices and studies for the September, 2017 Housing Market from NAR, S&P Dow Jones, Zillow and Trulia. Here are some conclusions.

Home sales prices increased +4.2% to $245,100 this September.

Existing home sales were ip 0.7% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 5.39M, down from 5.35M in August. The SAAR sales pace was the second lowest of the year. Low inventory was the likely culprit according to industry experts.

Lawrence Yun, the chief economist of NAR, said, “Realtors thus far continue to say that the primary impediments that are stifling sales growth are the same they have been all year, not enough listings especially at the lower end of the market plus fast-rising prices that are straining the budgets of prospective buyers.”

The Western region of the US saw the biggest kick in both the number of sales and sales prices. Existing home sales increased by +3.3% in the West to an annual rate of 1.24. Median home prices increased to $362,700., an increase of +5.0% year over year.

Pending sales declined everywhere to -3.5% year over year, the lowest reading (106.3) since January, 2015

Contract signings were down in the Southern region of the country. Most housing experts point to the devastating hurricane season. In terms of national pending house signing inventories, our seemingly constant culprits, booming home prices and low inventory, are again referenced by Yun from NAR.

”Buyers looking for some relief from stiff competition…may…be out of luck…inventory starts to decline heading into winter and many would-be buyers from earlier in the year are still on the hunt to find a home.”

California continues to be the most expensive place to become a homeowner, according to a recent study by HowMuch, a financial research firm. Land value/acre is $39,092 in California and the median home value is $449,100.

Massachusetts, New Jersey, Maryland and New York fall in line to make up the top five most expensive places to become a homeowner. Land values on the East coast are the highest in the country from $41,000 in New York to $196,000 in New Jersey. According to HowMuch researcher, Raul Amoros, East Coast highest land values are due to population density and the oldest modern structures in the US.

Seattle continues its nine-month reign as the city with the highest home price appreciation at +12.4%. The behemoth Amazon plays an instrumental role in Seattle’s price appreciation. Amazon employs 40,000 people in Seattle plus Amazon has and continues to snap up prime real estate in the city center.

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