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RE/MAX: U.S. housing market experiences largest inventory decline since last year

In August, the number of homes for sale fell 5.5% from the previous year

In August, America’s home sales slid 1.6%, marking the sixth month of 2019 that produced fewer sales than the previous year, according to the RE/MAX National Housing Report.

RE/MAX reports buyer demand outpaced homes listed for sale in August, causing the largest inventory decline in 13 months. Overall, the number of homes for sale fell 5.5% from 2018's level and 1.5% from the previous month.

The modest inventory growth that started last fall has been swallowed up by demand as buyers have returned to the market, likely spurred on by attractive interest rates, RE/MAX CEO Adam Contos said.

“Home sales dipping at the same time inventory falls suggests there may have been some reluctance on the part of sellers to list their homes,” Contos said. “Nevertheless, demand is again ahead of supply, extending the favorable seller’s market that has been in place for several years.”

According to RE/MAX, August posted a 2.8-month supply of inventory, falling from 2.9-month supply in August 2018. Homes spent 44 days on the market, which is one day longer than they did last year.

The median price for a home was $263,00 in August, rising 5.7% from last year. Going back to February 2012, prices have now climbed on an annual basis in 89 of the past 91 months.

“Homes moved quickly, and August saw a year-over-year price increase of 5.7%, further evidence of buyer demand,” RE/MAX stated. “The August Days on Market total of 44 represented the second-fastest pace of August home sales in the report’s history. The previous record was set last August, when homes sold in an average of 43 days.”

NOTE: The RE/MAX National Housing Report is based on MLS data in approximately 53 metropolitan areas, including all residential property types, and is not annualized. For maximum representation, many of the largest metro areas in the country are represented, and an attempt is made to include at least one metro from each state. 

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