Sales of new U.S. homes in July fell to its lowest level in five months, indicating that the housing sector is still on rocky footing after the housing bubble burst several years ago.

A joint release put out by the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development show that sales of new single-family houses in July of 2011 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 298,000, down from 300,000 in June and 316,000 in April, which was the yearly high.

Of all the houses sold in July, approximately 163,000 (55 percent) were in the South, according to the data released.  In the last few years, at least half of the houses sold in the U.S. per month have generally been in the South. The region with the fewest number of houses sold was the Northeast, with only 28 houses sold.

The numbers are still better than this time last year. In July 2010, the number of home sales was at a seasonally adjusted rate of 279,000. Still, these totals are significantly below numbers before the recession. At its peak in 2005, approximately 1,283,000 million homes were sold annually.  By 2009, that total fell to 375,000, its lowest point since 1982. It fell to 323,000 in 2010.  

The median sales price of new houses sold in July 2011 was $222,000, the average sales price was $272,300. Approximately 76 percent of home sales in July were under $300,000. Only 4 percent of homes sold were worth more than $750,000.

The information came from sample surveys. The release points out that changes in seasonally adjusted statistics can vary rapidly from one month to the next, and that it usually takes at least four months of data to demonstrate a housing trend.

Data for this month will be available on Sept. 16.