Existing home sales reached their highest levels in three years in November, according to reports from the National Association of Realtors on Thursday. Additionally, the inventory of homes for sale continued to shrink to a 4.8-month supply, which is the lowest level in more than seven years. A six-month supply is typically considered, by the real estate industry, to be a balanced market for both buyers and sellers. Total existing home sales rose in November to a seasonally adjusted rate of 5.04 million, which is 14.5% higher than November 2011. Existing home sales were up for for November in every region of the country. Areas hit by Hurricane Sandy show storm-related disruptions but overall activity in the Northeast is up, NAR says. Existing home sales there rose 6.9% in November from the month prior. The improving job market and continuing record-low mortgage rates combined with the low supply levels have been pushing potential buyers off of the sidelines and into the housing market. Experts are predicting this trend to carry on into the new year. For the full report on the housing market visit USAToday.