Yesterday I blogged that sales of existing homes fell 3 percent last month. Sales of new homes also fell. HUD and the Census Dept. released this info today:

Sales of new one-family houses in March 2009 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 356,000, according to
estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
This is 0.6 percent (±19.0%)* below the revised February rate of 358,000 and is 30.6 percent (±10.7%) below the March
2008 estimate of 513,000.

The median sales price of new houses sold in March 2009 was $201,400; the average sales price was $258,000. The
seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of March was 311,000. This represents a supply of 10.7
months at the current sales rate.

Most major media organizations covered this news and some, like Bloomberg, asked economists to make predictions about these numbers. Economists polled by Bloomberg predicted a median 1.5 percent drop and the 0.6 percent drop is less than that so the housing market may be better off than originally thought.

April 24, 2009