HUD Releases Bleak Housing Report: Sales of New Single-Family Houses Plummet in January

New Residential ConstructionImage via Pixabay

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Census Bureau jointly announced the following new residential sales statistics for January 2023:

New Residential Sales in January 2023

New Home Sales
Sales of new single‐family houses in January 2023 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 670,000, according to estimates released jointly Friday by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 7.2 percent (±20.4 percent)* above the revised December rate of 625,000, but is 19.4 percent (±13.1 percent) below the January 2022 estimate of 831,000.

Sales Price
The median sales price of new houses sold in January 2023 was $427,500. The average sales price was $474,400.

For Sale Inventory and Months’ Supply
The seasonally‐adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of January was 439,000. This represents a supply of 7.9 months at the current sales rate.

The full text and tables for the release can be found here.

EXPLANATORY NOTES
These statistics are estimated from sample surveys. They are subject to sampling variability as well as nonsampling error including bias and variance from response, nonreporting, and undercoverage. Estimated average relative standard errors of the preliminary data are shown in the tables. Whenever a statement such as “2.5 percent (±3.2%) above” appears in the text, this indicates the range (‐0.7 to +5.7 percent) in which the actual percent change is likely to have occurred. All ranges given for percent changes are 90‐percent confidence intervals and account only for sampling variability. If a range does not contain zero, the change is statistically significant. If it does contain zero, the change is not statistically significant; that is, it is uncertain whether there was an increase or decrease. The same policies apply to the confidence intervals for percent changes shown in the tables. Changes in seasonally adjusted statistics often show irregular movement. It takes 4 months to establish a trend for new houses sold. Preliminary new home sales figures are subject to revision due to the survey methodology and definitions used. The survey is primarily based on a sample of houses selected from building permits. Since a “sale” is defined as a deposit taken or sales agreement signed, this can occur prior to a permit being issued. An estimate of these prior sales is included in the sales figure. On average, the preliminary seasonally adjusted estimate of total sales is revised about 5.4 percent. Changes in sales price data reflect changes in the distribution of houses by region, size, etc., as well as changes in the prices of houses with identical characteristics. Explanations of confidence intervals and sampling variability can be found on the U.S. Census Bureau website.

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