A new report released on Tuesday by the National Association of Realtors found that last month sales of previously owned homes fell to their lowest pace in 20 months.
The report also shows a widening rift between the performance of high end properties and cheaper homes. Over the last year, sales of homes under $100,000 have plunged 18%, while sales of homes costing over $1 million have jumped 8%.
“There really should be stronger levels of home sales given our population growth,” said NAR chief economist Lawrence Yun. “In contrast, price growth is rising faster than historical norms because of inventory shortages.”
The Associated Press reports that the median price of a new home last month rose 12.6% to $290,000 from last March.
Concerns over America’s weak economy and grim jobs picture continue to weigh heavy on homeowners and renters. A new Gallup poll released on Tuesday finds that nearly one in three Americans (31%) say they are “very worried” or “moderately worried” that they will be unable to pay their mortgage, rent, or other housing costs.