New home sales dipped in April, a reversal that was expected by many analysts. The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development said sales of newly constructed homes during the month were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 662,000 units. This is 1.5 percent below the revised rate of 672,000 units in March. The March estimate was revised down from 694,000 units, erasing much of that month's reported 4 percent gain.
Despite the downturn, sales are now running 11.6 percent above the April 2017 estimate of 593,000 sales. In March the year-over-year gain was reported at 8.8 percent.
Analysts polled by Econoday had expected sales to be in the 650,000 to 692,000 range. The consensus was 677,000.
On a non-seasonally adjusted basis there were 64,000 new homes sold in April compared to 65,000 in March. The unadjusted total in April 2017 was 56,000 units.
For the year-to-date through the end of April there have been 231,000 new homes sold compared to 213,000 during the same period last year. This is a gain of 8.4 percent.
The median price of a new home sold during the month was $312,400 and the average was $407,300. The respective numbers in April 2017 were 311,100 and $365,800.
Sales in the Northeast rose 11.1 percent in April, only partially recovering from a 54.8 percent nosedive in March. Numbers in that region are now up 5.3 percent year-over-year but down 0.8 percent year-to-date. There was no change in sales numbers in the Midwest, but April did post a healthy 26.4 percent annual increase and are up 14.1 percent for the first four months of the year.
The South saw sales inch up 0.3 percent to an annual gain of 6.0 percent and a 5 percent year-to-date improvement. In the West there was a 7.9 percent decline in sales compared to March, but results were 18.9 percent higher on an annual basis and 15.1 percent higher thus far in 2018.
There were 300,000 homes available for sale at the end of the reporting period, an estimated 5.4-month supply at the current rate of sales. The median time on the market after completion was 3.8 months.