"Insufficient supply appears to be hampering prospective buyers in several areas of the country and is hiking prices to near unsustainable levels," says Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. "Stronger price growth is a boon for home owners looking to build additional equity, but it continues to be an obstacle for current buyers looking to close before [mortgage] rates rise."The median existing-home price for all housing types was $202,600 in February – 7.5 percent higher than a year ago.
Here are some more findings from NAR's latest housing report:4 Stats to Gauge the Market
- Northeast: existing-home sales plunged 6.5 percent to an annual rate of 580,000, but are 3.6 percent above year ago levels. Median price: $241,800, up 3.3 percent year-over-year.
- Midwest: existing-home sales were mostly unchanged from January at an annual level of 1.08 million, but are 4.9 percent higher than February 2014 levels. Median price: $152,900, up 8.8 percent from a year ago.
- South: existing-home sales rose 1.9 percent to an annual rate of 2.11 million last month, and are 6 percent higher than year ago levels. Median price: $177,900, up 8.5 percent from a year ago.
- West: existing-home sales increased 5.7 percent to an annual rate of 1.11 million in February, and are 2.8 percent above a year ago. Median price: $290,100 -- 4.2 percent above February 2014.