More Americans sign contracts to buy homes in June

WASHINGTON — More Americans signed contracts to purchase homes in June, marking the second straight month of growth.The National Association of Realtors said Tuesday that its pending home sales index rose 2.8% to 108.3 in June, up from 105.4 in May. Pending home sales are up 1.6% from their pace a year ago, snapping a 17-month streak of annual declines.Sales have likely been helped by lower interest rates, which are on average under 4% on a 30-year mortgage.All four regions saw contracts up from May and last year, with the West seeing the biggest jump in June at 5.4%. The West is also up the most year-over-year with gains of 2.5%.Pending sales is a measure of home purchases that are usually completed a month or two later.The Associated Press


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