New single-family home sales south of the border indicated the economy in the United States continues to chug right along, achieving 610,000 units in May, up 2.9%.
The Commerce Department also said the median sales price of new houses sold in May was $345,800, up 11.5 percent from $310,200 in April and up 16.8 percent from $296,000 in the same month a year ago.
The National Association of Realtors reported Thursday that sales of existing home, for which there is a much larger market than for new homes, increased 1.1 percent in May to a seasonally adjusted annual sales rate of 5.62 million.
The median sales price jumped 11.5 percent, hitting $345,800, an all-time record and the biggest increase in almost three years.
New-home sales rose in May and prices hit a record level, more evidence of strong demand and tight inventories in the housing market.
The rebound in May sales had been expected following the big April drop.
The majority of new-home sales were in the South, where the lower cost of taxes and living makes it appealing for both businesses and transplants.
Newly released federal data reaffirmed the continued strength of the housing market.
Median prices rose even more strongly, from 367,700 to 406,400.
So far in 2017, 271,000 new homes have been sold, which is 12% higher than during the same period a year ago. The unemployment rate fell to a 16-year low of 4.3% in May and mortgage rates are still favorable by historical standards.
At May's sales rate, it would take 5.3 months to clear inventory, unchanged from April.
Marked sales gains in the West (13.3 percent) and the Southeast (6.2 percent) outpaced a big decline in sales in the Midwest (25.7 percent) and the Northeast (10.8 percent). A six-month supply is seen as a healthy balance between supply and demand.