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Home Sales Forge Ahead

A surge in the Northeast and a smaller gain in the South pushed existing-home sales up in November for the third consecutive month, according to the National Association of Realtors®.
Total existing home rose 0.7 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.61 million in November from 5.57 million in October. November’s sales pace is now the highest since February 2007 and is 15.4 percent higher than a year ago.
Lawrance Yun, NAR chief economist, says it’s been an outstanding three-month stretch for the housing market as 2016 nears the finish line. “The healthiest job market since the Great Recession and the anticipation of some buyers to close on a home before mortgage rates rose have combined to drive sales higher in recent months,” he said. “Furthermore, it’s no coincidence that home shoppers in the Northeast — where price growth has been tame all year — had the most success last month.”
The median existing-home price 3 for all housing types in November was $234,900, up 6.8 percent from November 2015 ($220,000). November’s price increase marks the 57th consecutive month of year-over-year gains.
According to Freddie Mac, the average commitment rate for a 30-year, conventional, fixed-rate mortgage rose to 3.77 percent in November from 3.47 percent in October (highest rate since January at 3.87 percent).

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