Existing-home sales rose 3.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate(a) of 6.69 million units in September from a pace of 6.46 million units in August. Last month's sales activity was 20.8 percent above the 5.54-million unit pace in September 2002.
Housing inventory levels at the end of September dropped 1.2 percent from August to a total of 2.4 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 4.3-month supply at the current sales pace. The national median existing-home price was $172,300 in September, up 9.1 percent from September 2002 when the median price was $157,900.
Regionally, existing-home sales in the Northeast rose 7 percent in September to a record pace of 760,000 units, and were 18.8 percent above September 2002. The median existing-home price in the Northeast was $194,500, up 19.7 percent from a year ago.
Home resales in the West increased 5.1 percent in September to a record annual rate of 1.85 million units, and were 26.7 percent above a year earlier. The median existing-home price in the West was $230,700, up 9.2 percent from the same month in 2002.
Existing homes in the Midwest were selling at a record annual rate of 1.43 million units in September, up 4.4 percent from August; the pace was 17.2 percent above September 2002. The median price in the Midwest was $145,200, up 4.2 percent from a year ago.
The existing-home sales pace in the South was up 0.8 percent in September to a record annual rate of 2.64 million units, and was 18.4 percent above last September. The median price of an existing home in the South was $158,800, which was 8 percent higher than a year ago.