December Existing-Home Sales Down but Who Cares

Existing-home sales dipped slightly in December and that may be news worthy but among the data delivered Tuesday by the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION of REALTORS®, there is a much more important take away. Here are the most significant points of NAR’s release.

December’s existing-home sales, which do not include new construction were down 1% month-over-month however, year-over-year sales saw a 12.8% increase which is great news for the housing market as a whole. December marked the 2nd highest sales since November of 2009. The Highest? November 2012 so it is only natural to see a decline, as modest as 1% is, It is nothing to be worried about and perfectly normal for the season.

Search Homes For Sale Near You

The national median existing-home price in December was $180,800 which represents an 11.5% year-over-year increase. According to NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun, this is attributed to a surge in sales of homes over $1M which are up 62% year-over-year.


December saw a total of 1.82 Million homes for sale which represents a 8.5% decline compared to the previous month. We currently stand at 4.4 months of inventory. This means at the currewnt pace of sales, it would take a little over 4 months to sell all available properties.

December’s median days on the market stood at 73 vs. 99 days a year ago.

Sales Breakdown

  • 24% of Decmeber existing-home sales represented Distressed sales : 12% foreclosures and 12% short sales.
  • 29% of all transactions were all cash
  • 30% First-time Buyers
  • 21% Investors

2012 Preliminary Stats

4.65 Million home sales in 2012 which represent a 9.2% year-over-year increase and the highest level in 5 years. 2012 median home price of $176,600 is up 6.4% year-over-year and the highest levels in 4 years.

Looking Forward

2013 promisses to be a great year for homeowners. NAR Chief Economist stats inventory concerns with “price increases almost guarranteed…” and goes on to speculate possible appreciation of 4-5% or more for 2013.

Was this useful? Share or leave a comment below!

About Daniel Di Matteo

Realtor at CENTURY 21 Award, Daniel was Voted U-T San Diego’s Best Real Estate Agent in 2014. A Husband, Father, and most recently, accomplished Blog writer, which explains your visit today.