The 8.1 percent increase in pending home sales in August, the first gain in three months, didn’t start a trend. The National Association of Realtors® (NAR) said its Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI) for September slipped 2.3 percent in September to 116.7, and is now down 8.0 percent year-over-year. The PHSI is based on new purchase contracts for existing homes, including single-family dwellings, townhomes, condominiums, and cooperative apartments. “Contract transactions slowed a bit in September and are showing signs of a calmer home price trend, as the market is running comfortably ahead of pre-pandemic activity,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist. “It’s worth noting that there will be less inventory until the end of the year compared to the summer months, which happens nearly every year.

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