The pandemic has had many negative impacts on the economy, but the housing sector is still showing strength.

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Despite high unemployment and a pandemic continuing to spike in parts of the U.S., home sales are surging, leading to record-breaking prices. 

The median national price for a home in July was $304,100 in July, the first time ever that price tag topped $300,000, according to the National Association of Realtors.

And prices were up throughout the U.S.

In the Midwest, the median cost of a townhouse, home, or condo in July was $244,500, an 8% jump over that month last year.

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In the west, the median price was $453,800, an 11.3% spike over July 2019. And in the south, the median price was $268,500, 9.9% more than last year.    

The price bumps reflect the shrinking number of homes available for sale at a time when many Americans are eager to take advantage of low interest rates and buy. The 1.5 million houses, condos, and townhomes available for purchase in July was 21% lower than the housing inventory on the market one year earlier.

Sellers are fielding multiple offers, and homes are staying on the market an average of just 22 days, the shortest span ever.

But in the midst of a pandemic and economic slowdown that has led to a 10.2% unemployment rate, many Americans don’t have the financial resources to buy a home, particularly lower-wage workers in the hard-hit hospitality and retail sectors.

Follow Charisse Jones on Twitter @charissejones

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