The seasonally adjusted pace of existing-home sales across the U.S. dropped 6.4 percent at the end of 2018 to an annual rate of 4.99 million sales, which is 10.3 percent lower versus the same time last year according to the National Association of Realtors, down from 7.0 percent lower on a year-over-year basis in November, 5.1 percent lower on a year-over-year basis in October and 4.1 percent lower in September.

At the same time, while the inventory of existing homes on the market did decline 10.9 percent to 1.55 million at the end of December with typical seasonality in play, inventory levels were 5.8 percent higher versus the same time last year (versus around 50 percent higher in San Francisco).

Out West, the pace of existing-home sales dropped 1.9 percent in December to an annual rate of 1.02 million sales, which was 15 percent lower versus the same time last year with a median sale price of $380,600, down 1.6 percent from November and a nominal 0.2 percent higher versus the same time in 2017.

And as we first reported earlier this week, home sales in San Francisco are off to a slow start in 2019.

Comments from “Plugged-In” Readers

  1. Posted by bachman_erlich_overdrive

    These data are from the National Association of Realtors if anyone is curious about the source.

    BUT CAN YOU TRUST REALTORS?!?!?!?!?! /s/

    The S&P 500 was down 11% during the month of December, 2018.

    • Posted by No you cant

      “The National Association of realtors is dedicated to advancing the interests of listing agents who dominate the organization. Their primary focus is to generate real estate sales and commissions that provide income for its members. It spends enormous sums promoting real estate sales with the mantra, “it’s a great time to buy or sell a home.”

      • Posted by bachman_erlich_overdrive

        THEN ALL THE NUMBERS HERE ARE LIES!

        • Posted by Some Guy

          First — “Soylent green… IS PEOPLE!”

          Second — just because there’s a histrionic twit(terer) (some of whose policies I respect, regardless) in the White House doesn’t mean you have to emulate him. Calmate por favor.

    • Posted by Mystery Realtor

      Whoa there.
      You can probably also find the same data crunched on Zillow if you’re that paranoid.
      NAR stats are on the level, sometimes they get spun, but the data itself is solid

      • Posted by Roberto

        Actually they got caught significantly overstating the stats for years during the last downturn:

        “Early this year, the Realtors group was accused of overcounting existing homes sales, with California-based real estate analysis firm CoreLogic claiming sales could have been overstated by as much as 20 percent.”

        “Data on sales of previously owned homes from 2007 through October this year [2011] will be revised down next week because of double counting, indicating a much weaker housing market than previously thought.”

        • Posted by Mystery Realtor

          Wow. I hadn’t seen/heard about this before. I stand corrected.

    • Posted by SocketSite

      Good catch. Our reference to the National Association of Realtors was dropped from the month before and has since been added above.

      • Posted by bachman_erlich_overdrive

        You could add back the reference for September and October too, since those were not referenced. After that I got bored and stopped looking. You basically don’t attribute this data when you borrow it on the regular.

  2. Posted by bachman_erlich_overdrive

    Also, in school we call the use of another’s work without attribution plagiarism.

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