Fewer homes avail­able for sale

The Palm Beach Post - Residences - - Front Page -

March and April are nor­mally the be­gin­ning of the year’s most ac­tive home buy­ing pe­riod. But this year, buy­ers face a se­ri­ous dilemma.

Not enough homes are on the mar­ket to sat­isfy the de­mand. This opens the door to bid­ding wars and ris­ing prices in some cases. A ma­jor real es­tate or­ga­ni­za­tion re­cently is­sued a re­port on the sit­u­a­tion:

“As the home shop­ping sea­son ap­proaches, lack of in­ven­tory con­tin­ues to limit choices avail­able to po­ten­tial buy­ers, putting a strain on mar­kets across the coun­try.

“Home shop­pers had 8.6 per­cent fewer homes to choose from than they did last year, ac­cord­ing to the Jan­uary Zil­low Real Es­tate Mar­ket Re­ports. Hous­ing starts reached a three-month low in Jan­uary, in­di­cat­ing that newly built homes will not be a sig­nif­i­cant ben­e­fit for buy­ers, ei­ther.”

An in­creased num­ber of bid­ding is pre­dicted, ac­cord­ing to the Zil­low re­port.

“A re­stricted sup­ply of homes for sale will mean in­creased com­pe­ti­tion for homes that are avail­able, and bid­ding wars that can price out en­try-level or first-time buy­ers. Low in­ven­tory, along with a strong job mar­ket has been driv­ing up home prices, es­pe­cially on the West Coast.

“Across the coun­try, only a quar­ter of mar­kets saw in­ven­tory in­crease over the past year. Among the largest met­ros in the U.S., At­lanta saw the largest in­crease in avail­able homes for sale — 6.8 per­cent. Home shop­pers in San Diego have sig­nif­i­cantly fewer op­tions — in­ven­tory there has dropped 30 per­cent.”

Jim Woodard

Open House

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