A Welcome Trend: More Homes on the Market
The number of homes for sale is steadily increasing in spring 2014, and is expected to continue into the summer. This improvement in market conditions is certain to please prospective home buyers who suffered through a somewhat depressed market in fall/winter 2013/2014. In fact, buyers are finding a greater selection than a year ago. In addition, there’s less competition, meaning that you’re more likely to find and buy just the home you’re looking for at a price you can afford.
Inventories are Higher
Real estate professionals are reporting that inventories in March 2014 are up nearly 10% higher than last year at this time. However, the median price has increased, too, to just under $200,000. In addition, the age of inventory has risen as well. It’s now about 23% above last year’s figures, which means a median time of just over 102 days on the market for a typical property.
What the Numbers Mean
The figures indicate that 2014’s market is more balanced that 2013, when there was a shortfall in available homes that let to double-digit hikes in housing prices in most major markets, according to a report from Realtor.com. With more homes on the market, first-time and move-up buyers are likely to find more affordable prices across the board. In contrast, last year’s market’s lack of inventory caused intensive competition which in turn created a major price barrier to home ownership. Bidding wars were more common in 2013, and this alo caused prices to rise, putting them far above what some first-time homeowners were able to pay. Finally, many buyers found it difficult to save for a down payment due to depressed economic conditions in many markets.
Despite low inventories, the increase in the number of homes on today’s market indicates that buying conditions in 2014 have notably improved over 2013, say industry insiders. While it’s not exactly a buyer’s market, buyers should still be able to make attractive deals for homes of all types.