New numbers from the National Association of Realtors show that sales of previously owned homes fell 1.2 percent in January from the month before. It was the third consecutive monthly decline. Among the country’s four major regions, only the Northeast saw an increase in sales activity.
In addition to rising inventory, home price increases were the slowest in six years and homes were on the market for an average of 49 days. This is longer than it was at the same time last year, when most listed homes were selling in just 42 days. Essentially, spring home buyers may find buying conditions to be more favorable than expected.
NAR President, John Smaby, said that slower sales is good news for home buyers. Decelerated sales and increases in inventory will work in favor of potential home buyers, putting them in a better negotiating position heading into the spring months.