Sales of newly built homes improved unexpectedly in October, according to new estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Sales rose 6.2 percent over the previous month and are now 18.7 percent higher than they were at the same time last year. It was the third consecutive month new home sales increased. Along with recent improvements to builder confidence and housing construction, October’s sales increase could be an indication that next year’s housing market will be more balanced than this year’s has been. That’s because new homes add to the number of homes available for sale. And, when there enough homes available to match the level of buyer demand, home prices moderate. So a stronger new home market means there are more buying opportunities for interested home buyers and affordability conditions remain stable. In short, continued improvement in the new home market is good news for home buyers shopping for a home right now and those planning to this coming spring. Also in the report, the median sales price of new houses sold during the month was $312,800. The average sales price was $400,200. More here.