There's No Place Like Home: July Home Sales Soar

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According to the National Association of Realtors, U.S. existing home sales surged a record-breaking 24.7% in July compared with June, as the old-fashioned mantra "home sweet home" appears to be ringing true for Americans amid a pandemic that has most everyone hunkered down inside.

July's jump in home sales is the strongest monthly gain in the survey’s history, which dates back to 1968, according to CNBC.

The sales increase comes even as the supply of existing homes has fallen which, in turn, has driven up the price of homes. According to the survey, the median price for a home in July was $304,100, up 8.5% from July 2019.

Low interest rates are also attracting buyers to the market.

Meanwhile, New York City saw record rental vacancies in July. July rent dropped 10% from the year prior as residents leave the city amid the pandemic, according to The New York Times.

Stay-at-home stocks like Home Depot  (HD) - Get Report and Lowe's  (LOW) - Get Report have done well as homeowners turn to DIY projects and home improvement.

Watch: Buy Home Depot Stock? What Jim Cramer Is Waiting For

Lowe's posted stronger-than-expected second quarter earnings Wednesday as customers focused on home repair boosted same-store sales more than 35% amid the peak of the coronavirus pandemic. Similarly, Home Depot said earnings for the three months ending on August 2, the group's fiscal second quarter, were pegged at $4.02 per share, up 26.8% from the same period last year.

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