Thursday, November 29, 2007

October New Home Sales

by Bill McBride on 11/29/2007 10:10:00 AM

According to the Census Bureau report, New Home Sales in October were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 728 thousand. Sales for September were revised down substantially to 716 thousand, from 770 thousand. Numbers for July and August were also revised down.

New Home SalesClick on Graph for larger image.

Sales of new one-family houses in October 2007 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 728,000 ... This is 1.7 percent above the revised September rate of 716,000 and is 23.5 percent below the October 2006 estimate of 952,000.
New Home Sales
The Not Seasonally Adjusted monthly rate was 57,000 New Homes sold. There were 74,000 New Homes sold in October 2006.

October '07 sales were the lowest October since 1996 (56,000).
New Home Sales PricesThe median and average sales prices are generally declining. Caution should be used when analyzing monthly price changes since prices are heavily revised and do not include builder incentives.

The median sales price of new houses sold in October 2007 was $217,800; the average sales price was $305,800.
New Home Sales InventoryThe seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of October was 516,000.

The 516,000 units of inventory is slightly below the levels of the last year.

Inventory numbers from the Census Bureau do not include cancellations - and cancellations are once again at record levels. Actual New Home inventories are probably much higher than reported - my estimate is about 100K higher.
New Home Sales Months of InventoryThis represents a supply of 8.5 months at the current sales rate.


This is another VERY weak report for New Home sales. The stunning - but not surprising - downward revision to the August and September sales numbers was extremely ugly. This is the third report after the start of the credit turmoil, and, as expected, the sales numbers are very poor.

I expect these numbers to be revised down too - perhaps below 700K. More later today on New Home Sales.