Sales of new single-family homes rose by 20.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted rate of 1,021,000 in March, according to a report released Friday by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
A high unseen since 2006, the number is a a steep climb from last month’s rate of 846,000 and 66.8 percent above new-homes sales in March 2020. The median sales price of all new single-family homes was $330,800 while the number of new homes for sale on the market was 307,000, a supply of 3.6 months at the current sales rate.
Along with a typical seasonal lull, February’s low numbers showed that many potential buyers were struggling to find a house due to lack of inventory and very high prices. While March’s numbers are a major rebound, the same problems persist and many would-be buyers are instead searching for longer or putting off buying altogether.
“The factors that have fueled the recent strength in the market for new homes are holding fast – mortgage rates remain historically low, the supply of existing homes available for sale continues to fall short of demand and a wave of young adults are eagerly seeking ways to enter the market,” Zillow Economist Matthew Speakman said in a statement. “Builders have clearly taken note, upping their activity in recent months and expressing more confidence that the wave of home shoppers will continue to swell going forward.”
New-home sales are up month over month across every region except the West, which saw a 30 percent drop in sales from February. The Midwest saw the biggest increase in sales, with 40.2 percent more sales from last month and 90.1 percent more sales than last year.