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Existing Home Sales Grew Slightly in March; Supply Shortage Continues

After two straight months of declines, existing home sales climbed 1.1 percent in March but it was a familiar story as low inventory and high prices kept sales activity to a level lower than a year ago, according to NAR.

As NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun explained during this morning’s press conference, gains last month in the Northeast and Midwest – a reversal from the weather-impacted declines seen in February – helped overall sales activity rise to its highest jump since last November at 5.72 million.  Yet low supply and a median sales price increase of 5.9% since last year has home sales at a lower level compared to a year ago.

“Unsold inventory is at a 3.6-month supply at the current sales pace, compared to 3.8 months at this time in 2017. There is a spring seasonal ramp-up in buyer demand but without the corresponding increase in new listings coming onto the market,” said Yun. “As a result, the market is highly competitive and homes are going under contract in about a month, which is four days faster than last year and 17 days faster than March 2016.”

 

Story Ideas: Landscaping Projects Anyone Can Tackle

Spring has sprung, and for many homeowners, this means it is time to head outdoors. Now is the time of year to tackle landscaping projects, and HouseLogic has ideas for projects that even the most amateur gardener can take on.

Installing a path with flagstone or gravel is a simple, yet charming yard addition anyone can take on in a weekend and can have a significant impact on a home’s curb appeal. DIYers should make sure to allow three feet of width for clearance, remove sod at least three-to-four inches deep to keep grass from growing back and create curves in the path rather than straight lines for a more visually pleasing effect.

Story Springboard:

Check out HouseLogic’s “The Mistake-Free Guide to an Easy-Care Yard(link is external)” for more simple landscaping tips. Speak with a professional landscaper in your area about which projects homeowners can take on themselves and which projects need the help of a pro. Talk to a REALTOR® about which landscaping projects will add the most curb appeal.

You can view all of NAR’s Real Estate Story Ideas here or follow the RSS feed here.

Each month, NAR produces a few story ideas for the media, presenting timely topics accompanied with background information and facts related to the real estate market. These housing and real estate story ideas are designed to help media generate content for news stories, hopefully serving as a helpful resource to those in the media looking for stories or new angles.

Instant Reaction: March Jobs Report

The following is NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun’s reaction to this morning’s U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) report on the employment situation in March:

“The March jobs report was a bit soft, and first quarter GDP growth rate also looks to be weak. Heavy snow in parts of the country, and the uncertainty related to potential trade war, may be (as of now) hindering companies from hiring.

Although fewer people worked in construction in March because of the unusually cold wintry weather, job openings in the construction industry do remain at a historic high. If home builders can readily fill those jobs, then home construction significantly ramps up, and thereby brings more housing inventory to the market. 

Looking ahead, 3% GDP growth does look easily possible in upcoming quarters, with more construction jobs leading to more job creations in other segments of the economy.”

Cheri Elliott, Broker-Associate
Century 21 Select Real Estate
4601 Post Street
El Dorado Hills, CA 95762
Direct: 916-939-7762
Text: 916-812-0382
Email: elliott-c@sbcglobal.net
BRE#01320399

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Cheri Elliott | 916-939-7762 | Contact Cheri
4601 Post Street - El Dorado Hills, CA 95762
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