Archive for March, 2012

Pending home sales fall in February

Monday, March 26th, 2012

Housing sales remain well above year ago levels, but the number of buyers signing a contract in February fell from January levels.

The National Association of Realtors’ Pending Home Sales Index was down 0.5 percent from January, but remained 9.2 percent above February 2011.

“The spring home buying season looks bright because of an elevated level of contract offers so far this year,” said NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun. “If activity is sustained near present levels, existing-home sales will see their best performance in five years.”

The Washington-based trade group forecasts overall housing sales to rise 7 percent to 10 percent this year.

Pending sales in the South, which includes the Washington market, were down 3 percent in January but were still 7.8 percent above year ago levels.

The Midwest saw the strongest pending sales performance, up 6.5 percent from January and 19 percent higher than a year ago.

Pending sales in the Northeast fell 0.6 percent but were up 18.4 percent from a year ago, while pending sales in the West were down 2.6 percent, and still 1.8 percent below pending sales a year earlier.