By Diana Olick, CNBC Real Estate Reporter NEW YORK ( CNBC) -- Sales of newly built homes fell hard in June, despite newfound optimism in the housing recovery, especially among the home builders themselves. Signed contracts to buy new homes fell 8.4% from the previous month, according to the U.S. Commerce Department, although they are still up 15% from a year ago. Sales levels are now at their lowest since January. This is the second miss for housing in the same month. Sales of existing homes fell as well, despite expectations for a gain.
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Several home builders reported big jumps in new orders this spring, but those orders did not translate into pricing power for the market. Prices of new homes fell 3.2% in June after several months of gains. Single family housing starts rose 4.7% in June from the previous month to a four year high, but they are still running at about one third the historical average volume. Inventories of new homes for sale rose to 144,000, representing a 4.9 month supply, but that is still historically very low. --Written by Diana Olick at CNBC