The real estate market continues to favor sellers over buyers, as existing-home sales rose 2% from June to July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.99 million, according to data Monday from the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

July home sales rose 1.5% from the same time last year, while the median existing-home sales price rose 17.8%.

The residential real estate market, which has seen its biggest boom since 2006, appears to be showing signs of slowing down. Annual price gains were larger last month and comparisons are expected to be smaller.

Sales are likely due to the rising inventory of homes standing at 1.32 million, a 12% decrease from a year ago. Despite the increase in supply, demand is pushing prices to the highest they’ve ever been.

Lawrence Yun, the chief economist at NAR, said there are now more homes for sale than in May and June.

“The housing market went through a big swing during the COVID lockdown. Once the economy reopened, now the sector appears to be settling down,” Yun said in a press conference Monday announcing the new data.

“It is still a very swift, fast-moving market, but there is some indication that the market is less intensely heated now than before."

The real estate market is still highly competitive. Homes are spending an average of 17 days on the market.

First-time buyers make up 30% of home sales when they usually make up 40% and one-quarter of buyers are paying in cash.

Mortgage rates have largely remained unchanged compared to May and June, and mortgage applications continue to slow, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Danielle Hale, a chief economist at, said the economic recovery is vital to the sales momentum and that there should be a steady rise in home sales over the next few months if mortgage rates remain low.