The Associated Press reported today that the housing market “plunged deeper into despair in November,” with sales of new homes falling to their lowest level in more than 12 years.
The wire story, quoting a Commerce Department report issued today,says new-home sales tumbled 9 percent in November from October to a seasonally adjusted annual sales pace of 647,000.
That’s the worst sales pace since April 1995.
We wrote Wednesday on a report – the S&P /Case-Shiller Home Price Index – that said home prices across the country had fallen, and that prices in Seattle were down 0.9 percent between September and October and down 0.2 percent from August to September. The only bright news there was that Seattle was one of only three areas in the country to see an increase in home prices over the past 12 months – up 3.3 percent.
The AP said the housing picture turns out to be more grim than anticipated, with many economists predicting sales to decline by 1.8 percent.
Only in the West did sales rise – by 4 percent In the Midwest, new-home sales plunged 27.6 percent in November from October. Sales dropped 19.3 percent in the Northeast and 6.4 percent in the South.
Over the last 12 months, new-home sales nationwide have tumbled by 34.4 percent, the biggest annual slide since early 1991.
The median sales price of a new home dipped to $239,100 in November. That is 0.4 percent lower than a year ago.