Recent housing data has given potential home buyers and sellers plenty of reason to feel encouraged, with many industry analysts forecasting a good summer season following strong spring gains. Now, according to new estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, sales of newly built, single-family homes have added to the optimistic news. In fact, new home sales beat economists’ expectations in May, rising 2.2 percent above April’s revised rate and 19.5 percent above last year. The improvement brought new home sales to their highest level since February 2008. Combined with the recent spike in sales of previously owned homes, the data is another sign that the housing market’s rebound is gaining ground. Also in the report, the median sales price of new homes sold in May was $282,800; the average sales price was $337,000. At the current sales pace, there was a 4.5-month supply of new homes for sale at the end of the month. Typically, a six-month supply is considered a healthy market. More here.