“With the economy expected to pick up steam, jobless claims on the decline and home values rising steadily, home builders are reporting increased traffic of prospective buyers,” he said.
For the first half of this year, the average pace of new home sales was running 11% ahead of the same period last year.
“At this point, it’s nearly certain that we will set another record for new-home sales in 2003,” Conine said.
Builder inventories of new homes for sale remained at healthy levels in June. While the Commerce Department reported a 1.2% increase to 345,000 units on the market, the majority of that increase was in homes that had not yet been built.
There was only a 3.6 months supply of new homes in June at that month’s sales pace. This represented a slight decline from the prior month.
Sales of new homes rose in every region of the country: 32% in the Northeast, 9.8% in the Midwest, 2.7% in the West and almost 1% in the South.
NAHB recently increased its forecast for new home-sales for 2003 to 985,000. This represents a 1% increase from last year’s record-breaking 977,000 home sales.
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