WASHINGTON (8/14/14)--The housing market has taken positive steps of late, but more work needs to be done as the economy continues its recovery. That according to the Obama administration's July Housing Scorecard, released Tuesday by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
Progress such as rising existing-home sales and fewer foreclosure starts and completions have materialized, but new-home sales and a slowing of house-price appreciation nationwide has given pause to officials.
Existing-home sales, including single-family homes, townhouses and condos, sold at a pace of 5.04 million annualized units in June, the fastest pace since October and 2.6% higher than May, HUD reported.
Foreclosures, meanwhile, dropped 4% in June and have fallen 18% below levels seen a year ago.
On the other hand, June was the fifth-straight month of slower year-over-year home-price appreciation, while new-home sales declined a drastic 8.1% from May, 11.5% below the pace of sales seen a year ago during the month.
"The market indicators for the housing market recovery were mixed in July as foreclosure filings continue to improve, but home sales, particularly for new homes, showed unexpected weakness," said Katherine O'Regan, assistant secretary for policy development and research for HUD.
"Home prices, while still increasing, are doing so at slower rates," O'Regan added. "Indications are that continued improvements in the economy, such as the July employment report which marked the sixth straight month that more than 200,000 jobs have been added, along with slowly easing mortgage credit, will keep the U.S. housing market on the path to recovery."