The median price for an existing home in the U.S. hit a new record high at $363,300 in June, up 23.4% from a year ago and breaking the previous record set the month prior, according to the latest data from the National Association of Realtors.
Existing home sales also rose in June, rebounding after four consecutive months of declines as more inventory hit the market for hungry buyers.
"Supply has modestly improved in recent months due to more housing starts and existing homeowners listing their homes, all of which has resulted in an uptick in sales," said Lawrence Yun, NAR's chief economist. "Home sales continue to run at a pace above the rate seen before the pandemic."
The average price rose in every region in the U.S., hitting $507,000 in the West, $278,700 in the Midwest, $311,600 in the South and $412,800 in the Northeast. Every region saw double-digit increases in year-over-year sales.
"At a broad level, home prices are in no danger of a decline due to tight inventory conditions, but I do expect prices to appreciate at a slower pace by the end of the year," Yun said. "Ideally, the costs for a home would rise roughly in line with income growth, which is likely to happen in 2022 as more listings and new construction become available."
Homes sold in distress via short sale or foreclosure were less than 1% in June, in line with May figures and down from 3% in June of last year, the NAR found.
Meanwhile, escalating prices and insufficient inventory amid ongoing elevated demand continue to cause more would-be buyers to give up as the seller's market continues.
"Huge wealth gains from both housing equity and the stock market have nudged up all-cash transactions, but first-time buyers who need mortgage financing are being uniquely challenged with record-high home prices and low inventory," Yun said. "Although rates are favorably low, these hurdles have been overwhelming to some potential buyers."