Photo by John Schreiber.

The strong sales momentum that occurred during the peak home-buying season gave way in July as shrinking housing inventory and waning affordability stifled pending home sales, which declined both from the previous month and year, the California Association of Realtors said Wednesday.

Coming out of the summer home-buying months, the housing market is showing signs of slowing, with Realtors reporting fewer floor calls, listing appointments, and less open house traffic than in June, according to CAR’s July Market Pulse Survey.

Based on signed contracts, year-over-year statewide pending home sales fell in July on a seasonally adjusted basis, with the Pending Home Sales Index declining 2.6 percent from 122.5 in July 2016 to 119.4 in July 2017, according to a CAR statement.

California pending home sales also edged down on a monthly basis for the first time since March, decreasing 0.9 percent from the June index of 120.4. Pending home sales have declined on an annual basis for six of the last seven months this year, but the pace of decline has slowed in recent months.

After a solid run-up of pending sales growth in April, May, and June, continued housing inventory issues and affordability constraints may have pushed the market to a tipping point, suggesting the pace of growth will begin to slow in the fall, the CAR statement said.

The Southern California Region was the only major region to record an increase in pending sales from the previous year — the third straight annual gain. Los Angeles, San Bernardino County and Orange County saw healthy spikes of 4.0 percent, 6.0 percent, and 4.6 percent, respectively. But pending sales in San Diego (-5.8 percent) and Riverside

(-4.2 percent) counties declined from last July.

—City News Service

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