Pending home sales rose in July to the highest level in over two years and remain well above year-ago levels, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).
NAR's Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI) rose 2.4% to 101.7 in July from 99.3 in June and is 12.4% above the July 2011 level of 90.5.Â
NAR projects existing-home sales to rise 8% to 9% this year, followed by another 7% to 8% gain in 2013. NAR also expects home prices to increase 10% cumulatively over the next two years.
‘While the month-to-month movement has been uneven, more importantly, we now have 15 consecutive months of year-over-year gains in contract activity,’ says Lawrence Yun, NAR's chief economist. ‘All regions saw monthly increases in home-buying activity except for the West, which is now experiencing an acute inventory shortage.’