From the NAR: Pending Home Sales Grew for Third Straight Month, Up 0.8% in February
Pending home sales grew in February for the third consecutive month, according to the National Association of REALTORS®. Three U.S. regions posted monthly gains, while the West declined. All four regions saw year-over-year decreases in transactions.
The Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI)* — a forward-looking indicator of home sales based on contract signings — improved 0.8% to 83.2 in February. Year-over-year, pending transactions dropped by 21.1%. An index of 100 is equal to the level of contract activity in 2001.
“After nearly a year, the housing sector’s contraction is coming to an end,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “Existing-home sales, pending contracts and new-home construction pending contracts have turned the corner and climbed for the past three months.”
The Northeast PHSI raised 6.5% from last month to 72.5, a drop of 17% from February 2022. The Midwest index improved 0.4% to 84.9 in February, a decline of 16.5% from one year ago.
The South PHSI grew 0.7% to 99.3 in February, dropping 21.7% from the prior year. The West index decreased 2.4% in February to 64.6, shrinking 28.4% from February 2022.
emphasis addedExpectations had been for a 3.0% decrease for this index. Note: Contract signings usually lead sales by about 45 to 60 days, so this would usually be for closed sales in March and April.