The National Association of Realtors reported November existing home sales of 4.90 million SAAR. This is below estimates, but not surprising when looking at various macro factors at work. As I reported earlier this morning home builders have been seeing stagnating sales as well, and buyers in general have been slamming into that wall of affordability. The average contract rate on a 30-year fixed rate mortgage climbed to 4.47% this week. As a reminder, it was 3.37% a year ago. Still think interest rates don’t matter? Home buyers apparently do. While NAR may be cheering the recent home price gains, many buyers aren’t. That dynamic is reflected in declining mortgage purchase applications. Inventory now appears to be climbing higher in many U.S. real estate markets. Inventory was up 5% year-over-year in November compared to 2012.