Existing Home Sales Plunge 25%


The housing market is still struggling to stabilize.

Sales of existing homes in the third quarter of this year declined by an ominous 25.2% from the previous quarter, largely due to the expiration of the homebuyer tax credit, according to a recent survey from the National Association of Realtors.

Between July and September of this year, there were a total of 4.16 million existing homes sold, according to the association’s survey of 155 metropolitan areas throughout the country. By comparison, there were 5.57 million homes sold between April and June, which coincides with the homebuyer tax credit that wound down during that quarter.

Much of the decline occurred in first month of last quarter, as the number of existing home sales in July declined to the lowest amount in 15 years. In the two months after that, home sales did begin to improve slightly, though not nearly enough to maintain the momentum provided by the tax credit.

However, while fewer Americans may have been able to sell their homes last quarter, the report did find that single-family home prices increased in half of the cities surveyed, though the median sale price nationwide remained largely unchanged at $177,900.

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