By Manuel Gutierrez, Consulting Economist to NKBA
Sales of new homes continued their climb, rising 2.3 percent in December — the third consecutive month of increases — to an annualized 616,000 units. This is a four-month high, but off 23 percent year-over-year. For the full year, 644,000 new homes were sold, 17 percent fewer than in 2021, and fewer than in any of the prior 4 years.
- Overall 2022 sales fell across all four regions. The West suffered the largest decline, down 24 percent to 150,000, followed by the Midwest, off 22 percent to 67,000. The South fell 13 percent to 194,000, and the Northeast dropped 8 percent to 33,000.
- For the month, however, sales rose in the Midwest by 35 percent and were up 7 percent in the South.
- Half of the new homes sold last year were still under construction, 21 percent had not been started yet, while 30 percent were completed.
- Inventory of homes for sale continues to increase, however, as 2022 closed with 461,000 new homes on the market, up 19 percent from 2021.
- Prices slipped for the month but are ahead for the year. The median sale price fell 4 percent in December to $442,100, and the average price was $528,400 for the month, both 8 percent higher YOY.