US homes sales improved in June, best pace since early 2007


WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans bought more homes in June, the fourth straight monthly gain as the sales rate reached its highest level in more than nine years.

The National Association of Realtors says sales of existing homes rose 1.1 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.57 million, the best performance since February 2007.

Buyers are quickly making offers amid tight supplies of homes on the market, boosting prices. The solid job market and mortgage rates near historic lows have kept demand steady, even though the number of listings on the market has dropped.

First-time buyers comprised 33 percent of June sales, their highest share of the market in four years.

The median home sales price was $247,700 in June, up 4.8 percent from a year ago.