Available Housing Inventory Is Collapsing

Tuesday economic releases:
• At 10:00 AM ET, Trulia Price & Rent Monitors for November. This is the index from Trulia that uses asking prices adjusted both for the mix of homes listed for sale and for seasonal factors.

Here is another update using inventory numbers from HousingTracker / DeptofNumbers to track changes in listed inventory. Tom Lawler mentioned this last year.

According to the deptofnumbers.com for (54 metro areas), overall inventory is down 22 percent year-over-year and probably at the lowest level since the early ’00s.

This graph shows the NAR estimate of existing home inventory through October (left axis) and the HousingTracker data for the 54 metro areas through early December.

Since the NAR released their revisions for sales and inventory last year, the NAR and HousingTracker inventory numbers have tracked pretty well. HTearlyDec2012

On a seasonal basis, housing inventory usually bottoms in December and January and then increases through the summer. So inventory will probably decline a little further over the next month or so, before increasing again next year.

The second graph shows the year-over-year change in inventory for both the NAR and HousingTracker.HTEarlyDecYoY2012

HousingTracker reported that the early December listings, for the 54 metro areas, declined 21.7 percent from the same period last year.

The year-over-year declines will probably start to get smaller since inventory is already very low. It seems very unlikely we will see 20%+ year-over-year declines next summer, but it does appear that inventory will be very low in 2013.

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