CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The pending sales of existing homes fell 2.2% in September, the National Association of Realtors said Thursday, the first monthly contraction of that figure in four months.
The report is the latest indicator that showed the housing market cooled in September after being strong throughout the summer. Sales of existing homes fell in September as well, NAR reported earlier this month, and the Commerce Department said sales of newly constructed homes fell in September, too.
Despite the modest decline, contract signings are still up 20.5% from a year earlier, the industry trade group said.
Three out of the four regions tracked by NAR saw monthly declines. Only the Northeast reported a month-over-month gain.
Three of four regional indices recorded decreases in contract activity on a month-over-month basis in September.
The Northeast PHSI grew 2.0% to 119.4 in September, a 27.7% increase from a year ago. In the Midwest, the index slid 3.2% to 120.5 last month, up 18.5% from September 2019.
Pending home sales in the South decreased 3.0% to an index of 150.1 in September, up 19.6% from September 2019. The index in the West fell 2.6% in September to 116.8, up 19.3% from a year ago.
Realtor.com®‘s Housing Market Recovery Index, which reveals metro areas where the market has recovered or even exceeded its previous January levels, showed the greatest recoveries as of October 10 were in Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Wash.; Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Mass.-N.H.; Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, Calif.; Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nev.; and San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif.