New Home Sales Slow in November From Record Pace
Sales of new single-family homes fell 12% in November from October’s record pace to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.125 million units, the Commerce Department reported last month. But sales for the month were still 3.6% above the pace a year earlier, and new homes in October and November sold at a faster clip than in the first three quarters of 2004.
“Builders across the country remain very upbeat about the single-family housing market,” said NAHB President Bobby Rayburn. “The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index, which is based on our monthly surveys of single-family builders, indicated that all the fundamentals are in place for strong months ahead.”
“The government’s home sales series has been showing a lot of month-to-month volatility, and revisions to preliminary estimates can be quite large,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Seiders. He added that the report on new home sales in November should be viewed in the context of positive signals on housing demand from surveys of both home builders and mortgage lenders.
“The fundamentals supporting housing demand still are quite solid. Mortgage rates are historically low, job growth is moving ahead and household income is rising,” Seiders continued. “Sales of new single-family homes will hit a record in 2004 despite the surprising decline reported for November.”