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Pending home sales show oncoming growth of moving families

A growing number of homes are now under contract to be sold.

A growing number of homes are now under contract to be sold.

The number of pending home sales in the U.S. has risen for the second consecutive month, showing that more families are preparing for relocation.

The Pending Home Sales Index, created by the National Association of Realtors, increased 4.3 percent from July to August to a final mark of 82.3. However, despite the rise, that number is still 20.1 percent below statistics from last August, when the index came in at 103.

"Attractive affordability conditions from very low mortgage interest rates appear to be bringing buyers back to the market," said Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist. "However, the pace of a home sales recovery still depends more on job creation and an accompanying rise in consumer confidence."

Pending home sales represent the number of home purchases under contract, and not the closings themselves, which generally lag behind the contract by one or two months. A rating of 100 is equivalent to the average level of activity in 2001, when the index was first started.

The increase in moving activity is also evident based on a recent poll by Harris Interactive. The survey found that 10 percent of consumers planned to buy a home or condo in the next six months, up from 7 percent in May.