Contracts to buy previously owned homes rebounded in June after three straight monthly declines, but the housing market remains constrained by a shortage of properties available for sale.
The National Association of Realtors said on Monday its Pending Home Sales Index, based on contracts signed last month, jumped 1.5 percent to a reading of 110.2. Economists had forecast pending home sales rising 0.7 percent last month.
Pending home contracts become sales after a month or two, and last month’s surge implied a pickup in existing home sales after they dropped 1.8 percent in June. The housing market has been stymied by a dearth of properties, which has pushed up prices and sidelined first-time homebuyers.
“Market conditions in many areas continue to be fast-paced, with few properties to choose from, which is forcing buyers to act almost immediately on an available home that fits their criteria,” said Lawrence Yun, the NAR’s