U.S. Pending Home Sales Rebound in May

06/29/2020 | 10:38 am

By Amara Omeokwe

 

The number of houses going under contract rebounded sharply in May after two previous months of declines, a sign homebuyers returned to the market as coronavirus-related lockdowns began to ease. Here are highlights from Monday's National Association of Realtors report:

--An index of pending home sales, contract signings for purchases of previously owned homes, rose 44.3% to 99.6 in May from April. That was the highest month-over-month increase on records extending back to 2001, according to NAR. Contract signings for May were down 5.1% year-over year, however.

--Contract signings had plunged sharply earlier on in the coronavirus pandemic, falling more than 20% in both March and April. May's bounceback was widespread, with every major region seeing month-over-month increases, according to NAR. The southern region also saw a year-over-year increase, NAR said.

--While sales of previously owned homes fell last month, according to NAR, an uptick in contract signings could signal a turnaround for sales in coming months. A recent spike in U.S. infections has led some states to reverse or pause reopening plans, however, something that could threaten the overall economic recovery. The Commerce Department last week reported sales of newly built single family homes rose sharply in May, another positive sign for the housing market.

 

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