A view into the family room from the kitchen.

The Beginning of 2023 Saw a Drop In Home Prices

Mortgage rates and home prices let up a bit at the beginning of 2023 causing the new home sales to rise from December 2022 to January 2023. New construction home sales rose 7.2% in January 2023 from December 2022. According to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the US Census Bureau this is still down 19.4% from the same time last year. Industry leaders are beginning to see that the housing market is stabilizing.

New single-family houses were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 625,000 at the end of 2022, and shot up to 670,000 in January 2023. This still does not come close to the record sales pace in March 2022 which was a rate of 831,000.

Prices of new homes are starting to slow down. The median price for a new home was $465,500 in December 2022 and fell in January 2023 to $427,500. This is .7% lower than it was the same time a year ago which came in at $430,500.

“New home sales prices dropped precipitously in January to the lowest median price since February of last year. While sales are still depressed from a year ago, this shows another crack in the housing market that should benefit potential homebuyers, especially when mortgage rates drop,” says Robert Frick, corporate economist at Navy Federal Credit Union.

The existing home inventory is still low, so the new construction home listings are filling the gap according to Kelly Mangold of RCLCO. Builders are being flexible with the prices which make it a bit harder for buyers to find homes on the market to purchase. This coupled with the up and down mortgage rates has not made the market easier for buyers.

“Price adjustments and builder incentives helped to push the sales pace in a positive direction. January had the lowest level of existing home sales in over a decade-and motivated buyers are increasingly seeking new homes because there is limited resale inventory available,” says Mangold.

“Mortgage rates are spooking sellers looking to upgrade when they calculate the potential increase in their monthly payments, and the hesitation to put existing homes on the market is allowing new construction homes to have less competition,” explains Mangold.

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