December Cash Home Sales Highest in Delaware, Alabama, New York

In December of 2015, cash sales comprised 33.4% of all home sales, down from 36.7% in December of 2014, marking the 36th consecutive year-over-year monthly decline. Cash sales fell by 2.8 percentage points month over month.

For all of 2015, 33.9% of all home sales were cash transactions, the lowest total since 2008.

Cash home sales reached a peak in January of 2011, when 46.6% of all home sales in the United States were sold for cash. That peak was nearly double the pre-housing-crisis average of around 25%. If cash sales continue to fall at the December rate, the 25% rate should be achieved by mid-2017.

December data were reported Thursday by CoreLogic. The researchers noted:

The month over month decrease in the cash sales share was larger than normal for the month of December, indicating that the elevated share reported for November, which was attributed to the new federal mortgage rules (TRID), was temporary.

The five states where cash sales were highest in December were Delaware (57%), Alabama (50.1%), New York (46.5%), Florida (46.3%) and Mississippi (45%). Sales include new construction, resales, real-estate owned (REO) and short sales.

Cash sales for REO properties accounted for 59.2% of all cash sales, while cash sales for resales and short sales accounted for about 33.4% and 30.9%, respectively. All-cash sales of new homes came in at 15.4% of all new home sales in December.

As a percentage of all sales, REOs accounted for 5.9% of total December real-estate sales. In January 2011, REO sales accounted for nearly 24% of all sales.

Of the nation’s 100 largest metropolitan areas, the five Core-Based Statistical Areas with the greatest percentage of cash sales in November were:

  • Detroit, Mich., 62.7%
  • West Palm Beach-Boca Raton-Delray Beach, Fla., 53.4%
  • Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, Fla., 53.2%
  • Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach-Deerfield Beach, Fla., 51.2%
  • North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton, Fla., 51%

The metro area with the lowest percentage of cash sales was Syracuse, N.Y., with a cash sales share of 12.5% of all sales.