Existing-home sales slump 8.5% in March — but the worst is yet to come as the coronavirus hits the U.S. housing market
Sales of previously-owned homes slid 8.5% in March as the coronavirus pandemic began to exert pressure on the U.S. real estate market.
Existing-home sales occurred at a seasonally-adjusted annual pace of 5.27 million, the National Association of Realtors reported Tuesday. March represented a major reversal from the month prior, which featured the strongest sales figure for the month of February since 2007.
Despite the slowdown on a monthly basis, existing-home sales still occurred at a 0.8% faster pace than a year ago, representing the ninth consecutive month in which sales were higher year-over-year.
“Unfortunately, we knew home sales would wane in March due to the coronavirus outbreak,” said Lawrence Yun, the National Association of Realtors’ chief economist. “More temporary interruptions to home sales should be expected in the next couple of months, though home prices will still likely rise.”