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CNBC video: Home shortage could be due to real estate agents

Pocket listings drag down inventory?

Diana Olick
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Several media outlets are hopping on the National Association of Realtors data showing a 2.6% incline from May.

Here at HousingWire, when it comes to home sales, our reaction was more muted, considering the annual numbers are in decline.

This shows a recessed market contracting further, in our opinion, but we nonetheless listen to all viewpoints.

Home sales are picking up, short term, and that’s good news.

The real question remains, however, about overall supply and demand.

Total housing inventory at the end of June rose 2.2% to 2.3 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 5.5-month supply at the current sales pace, unchanged from May. Unsold inventory is 6.5% higher than a year ago, when there were 2.16 million existing homes available for sale.

But I’m with CNBC’s Diana Olick in reporting that the amount of both vacant and occupied properties in the United States is, in fact, being held back.

I tend to lean towards lenders holding the properties on the books since the longer they wait, they more the homes can be sold for, considering an environment of rising house prices. Soon, though, these homes will come to market as price appreciation continues to cool down.

Olick, for her part, offered a much more interesting explanation to the entire market.

At the very end of the video, below,  she offers the following:

“Anecdotally, people still feel like there is a shortage of homes for sale on the market. A lot of that could be due to a rise in pocket listings. That’s when real estate agents don’t put their listings on the MLS.”

Pocket listings are normally reserved for high-profile, high-end  home purchases.

But Sep Niakin, a Miami real estate broker, told MSN Real Estate, that trend could be shifting.

"Some people don't want their neighbors to know their business, so when it is time to sell their home, they do it under the radar," says Sep Niakan, with HB Roswell Realty in Miami. "High end definitely has common pocket listings, but we have pocket listings for $200,000 properties, as well."

But is it enough to impact the national housing market?

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