Pending home sales increased in November for the third straight month and reached the highest level in two-and-a-half years, according to the National Association of Realtors' (NAR) Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI).
NAR's PHSI rose 1.7% to 106.4 in November from a downwardly revised 104.6 in October and was 9.8% above November 2011 when it was 96.9. The index was at the highest level since April 2010 when it hit 111.3 as buyers were rushing to beat the deadline for the home buyer tax credit. On a year-over-year basis, pending home sales have risen for 19 consecutive months.
‘Even with market frictions related to the mortgage process, home contract activity continues to improve,’ says Lawrence Yun, NAR's chief economist. ‘Home sales are recovering now based solely on fundamental demand and favorable affordability conditions.’