The Real Deal Miami

Existing home sales climb for fifth straight month, as prices drop

September 24, 2009 08:33AM

Sales of existing U.S. homes last month may have reached the highest level in two years, according to a Bloomberg news survey of 74 leading economists. Existing home purchases rose 2.1 percent, according to the survey, marking the fifth consecutive monthly gain. While many acknowledge that federal tax incentives have boosted homebuyer activity, Michelle Meyer, an economist with Barclays Capital, said that this news indicates a significant shift in the market. “The housing recovery is underway,” Meyer said. “While the first-time homebuyer tax credit likely boosted sales, there has been a fundamental shift in homebuying due to greater affordability and confidence.”