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New Home Sales increase to 811,000 Annual Rate in December; Sales down 7.3% in 2021


by Calculated Risk on 1/26/2022 10:09:00 AM

The Census Bureau reports New Home Sales in December were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 744 thousand.

The previous three months were revised down, combined.

Sales of new single-family houses in December 2021 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 811,000, according to estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 11.9 percent above the revised November rate of 725,000, but is 14.0 percent below the December 2020 estimate of 943,000.

An estimated 762,000 new homes were sold in 2021. This is 7.3 percent below the 2020 figure of 822,000.
emphasis added

Click on graph for larger image.

The first graph shows New Home Sales vs. recessions since 1963. The dashed line is the current sales rate.

New home sales are now declining year-over-year since sales soared following the first few months of the pandemic.

The second graph shows New Home Months of Supply.

The months of supply decreased in December to 6.0 months from 6.6 months in November.

The all-time record high was 12.1 months of supply in January 2009. The all-time record low was 3.5 months, most recently in October 2020.

This is at the top of the normal range (about 4 to 6 months of supply is normal).

“The seasonally-adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of December was 403,000. This represents a supply of 6.0 months at the current sales rate.”

The last graph shows sales NSA (monthly sales, not seasonally adjusted annual rate).

In December 2021 (red column), 57 thousand new homes were sold (NSA). Last year, 61 thousand homes were sold in December.

The all-time high for December was 87 thousand in 2005, and the all-time low for December was 23 thousand in 2010.

This was above expectations of 760 thousand SAAR, however sales in the three previous months were revised down, combined. I’ll have more later today.

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