The National Association of Realtors announced that home sales increased by 10% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.53 million in September. Analysts had only expected a gain of 4.39 million. The price of existing homes decreased 2.4% to a median price of $171,700. This may be what caused the home sales increase. Distressed sales accounted for 35% of all sales, compared to 34% in August and 29% in Sept. 2009. Home sales are 19% below the 5.6 million units recorded in the beginning of the recession in September 2009. “A housing recovery is taking place but will be choppy at times depending on the duration and impact of a foreclosure moratorium. But the overall direction should be a gradual rising trend in home sales with buyers responding to historically low mortgage interest rates and very favorable affordability conditions,” said Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at NAR.