Sales rose the most in the West (13.3 percent to 162 thousand), followed by the South (6.2 percent to 360 thousand) while declines were seen in the Northeast (-10.8 percent to 33 thousand) and the Midwest (-25.7 percent to 55 thousand).
The median sales price of new houses sold was $345,800 higher than $310,200 in the previous month. The average sales price was $406,400, well above $367,700 in April.
The stock of new houses for sale went up to 268 thousand from 264 thousand in both April and March. This represents a supply of 5.3 months at the current sales rate.
Year-on-year, new home sales jumped 8.9 percent.
Figures for April were revised sharply higher to 593 thousand from an initial estimate of 569 thousand. The March figure was also revised up by 2 thousand to 644 thousand, remaining the highest since October of 2007.