Sales of existing U.S. homes rose to the highest level in eight years, according to the National Association of Realtors, but that may be the peak for the year. One real estate brokerage claims consumer demand for housing took a sharp turn for the worse in June, as potential buyers balked at higher home prices.
"People look at houses and don't pull the trigger," said Glenn Kelman, CEO of brokerage Redfin, which released a new demand index on Thursday. "We know that the number of people writing offers has been declining for 4½ weeks, and based on that data we make a forecast."
The new demand index tracks millions of visits to Redfin's listing pages, as well as customer requests for home tours, customer offer requests on homes and various pricing data; in June it showed demand up 13 percent from a year ago but down 7 percent from May. That was the largest monthly decline since December of 2014.
"I think there's fatigue, frustration with high prices and a feeling that rates have started to move up, so people are packing it in early this season. Sometimes the housing market really has a long summer. I don't think it will this year," Kelman said.