Sales of newly built single-family homes decreased 12.6 percent in January to a seasonally adjusted 284,000 units, according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development .
Regionally, new home sales fell in both the South and West. The Northeast saw a gain of 54.5 percent, rising from very low sales figures the previous month. The Midwest had a more moderate gain of 17.1 percent.
The inventory of new homes fell by 0.5 percent in January to 188,000 units, which represent a 7.9-month supply.