New single-family houses sales in the US unexpectedly jumped 4.1% month-over-month to an annual rate of 683,000 in April 2023, the highest level since March last year, the Commerce Department revealed in a report released on Tuesday (May 23). Sales increased 17.8% to 443,000 in the South and 11.8% to 76,000 in the Midwest, but sank 58.6% to 24,000 in the Northeast and 9.1% to 140,000 in the West. The median sales price of new houses was $420,800 while the average sales price was $501,000 compared to $458,200 and $562,400 respectively a year ago.
Last week, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) released a separate report unexpectedly showing a drop in existing home sales in April. NAR said existing home sales decreased by 3.4% to an annual rate of 4.28 million last month after tumbling by 2.6 % to a revised rate of 4.43 million in March. Economists had expected existing home sales to inch up by 0.1% compared to the 2.4% drop originally reported for the previous month. The median existing home price was $388,800 in April, down 1.7% from $395,500 y-o-y, according to NAR.