Fewer Americans signed on the dotted line in July to purchase a home — but it’s likely too early to say whether that’s a signal of a cooling market.
Pending home sales fell 1.8% in July compared with June, the National Association of Realtors reported Monday. Economists polled by MarketWatch had projected a 0.5% increase for pending home sales in July.
Compared to last year, there was an even more significant decline in pending home sales, with an 8.5% drop.
On a regional basis, only the West saw an improvement in contract signings, with a 1.9% monthly increase. The Northeast experienced the largest monthly decline of any region, with a 6.6% drop from June. Every region saw pending home sales decrease on an annual basis.
“The market may be starting to cool slightly, but at the moment there is not enough supply to match the demand from would-be buyers,” Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of Realtors, said in the report. “That said, inventory is slowly increasing and home shoppers should begin to see more options in the coming months.”