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Homes under contract see meager gains

Posted by The Aramco Group on Sun, Jul 31, 2016 @ 14:07 PM

Pending home sales nationwide ticked up last month as mortgage rates remain near all-time lows. The housing market has not necessarily seen the traditional increase as summer unfolds and market analysts point to June's lackluster increase as an indication that the fall season may see a significant drop in sales. According to the National Association of Realtors' pending home sales index, which measures the volume of homes currently under contract, rose a meager 0.2 percent in June from the previous month.

Economists consider the lack of housing inventory on the market the primary reason behind the small increase in June. Nonetheless, last month's reading landed as the second-highest in the past year but significantly lower than the 2016 high reached in April.

Pending home sales are homes that have been put under contract but have no closed escrow yet. This index functions as a leading indicator for future home sales.

Historically low interest rates are giving buyers an incentive to lock in low rates as quickly as possible. Today, conforming no-point 30-year fixed rates average 3.375 percent while the 15-year rate is near 2.625 percent.

Do you have a question for Real Estate & Mortgage Analyst Mehran Aram? Submit your queries about a home purchase, refinance, or reverse mortgage via Aramco.Biz, social media (#AramcoReport), or over the phone at (866) 381-8888 and your questions may be featured in an upcoming article.