The inventory of homes for sale has reached its lowest level since 1999, which is helping home prices to rise in many markets, says Lawrence Yun, the National Association of REALTORS®’ chief economist.
“Buyer traffic is continuing to pick up, while seller traffic is holding steady,” Yun says. “In fact, buyer traffic is 40 percent above a year ago, so there is plenty of demand but insufficient inventory to improve sales more strongly. We’ve transitioned into a seller’s market in much of the country.”
The National Association of REALTORS® is projecting a seasonal rise of inventory this spring, “but it may be insufficient to avoid more frequent incidences of multiple bidding and faster-than-normal price growth,” Yun says.
While the housing recovery is taking hold, more buyers and sellers are realizing they are in a better place this year than last year. Super low mortgage rates are keeping home prices affordable, despite recent price gains.
However, some housing experts are concerned that several factors could still threaten housing’s recovery this spring–mainly the economy and threats over a new recession that may be looming. Also, unemployment remains high, which can cause home owners to fall into foreclosure and could increase foreclosure rates, which can bring overall home prices down.
Source: “Will housing market’s revival last?” Sarasota Herald-Tribune (March 9, 2013)