The Census Bureau reports New Home Sales in September were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 701 thousand.
The previous three months were revised down slightly, combined.
“Sales of new single‐family houses in September 2019 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 701,000, according to estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 0.7 percent below the revised August rate of 706,000, but is 15.5 percent above the September 2018 estimate of 607,000.”
Click on graph for larger image.
The first graph shows New Home Sales vs. recessions since 1963. The dashed line is the current sales rate.
Even with the increase in sales over the last several years, new home sales are still somewhat low historically.
The second graph shows New Home Months of Supply.
The months of supply was unchanged in September at 5.5 months from 5.5 months in August.
The all time record was 12.1 months of supply in January 2009.
This is in the normal range (less than 6 months supply is normal).
“The seasonally‐adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of September was 321,000. This represents a supply of 5.5 months at the current sales rate.”
On inventory, according to the Census Bureau:
“A house is considered for sale when a permit to build has been issued in permit-issuing places or work has begun on the footings or foundation in nonpermit areas and a sales contract has not been signed nor a deposit accepted.”
Starting in 1973 the Census Bureau broke this down into three categories: Not Started, Under Construction, and Completed.
The third graph shows the three categories of inventory starting in 1973.
The inventory of completed homes for sale is still somewhat low, and the combined total of completed and under construction is close to normal.
The last graph shows sales NSA (monthly sales, not seasonally adjusted annual rate).
In September 2019 (red column), 54 thousand new homes were sold (NSA). Last year, 46 thousand homes were sold in September.
The all time high for September was 99 thousand in 2005, and the all time low for September was 24 thousand in 2011.
This was slightly above expectations of 699 thousand sales SAAR, however sales in the three previous months were revised down slightly, combined. I’ll have more later today.