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After bubble and rebound, market seems stabilizing

 

NEW YORK – June 6, 2014 – Nationally, the number of single-family homes for sale and their prices continues to rise, revealing a healthier real estate marketplace than a year ago and strong seller confidence, according to the April 2014 National Housing Trend Report released by realtor.com.

While last April's list price gains were driven largely by dramatic shortages in for-sale inventory, April 2014 data shows sustained moderate home price gains in tandem with increasing inventories. The increase in inventory and asking price suggests sellers are more optimistic than a year ago, likely the result of a strengthening national economy.

April home inventories are up 14.2 percent compared with April 2013, according to realtor.com data. The median list price (not selling price) on realtor.com rose by 6.5 percent to $207,500 compared to last year. Median age of inventory on realtor.com is 86 days – a 6.2 percent increase compared to a year ago.

The combination of median list price rising above $200,000 and a double-digit home inventory increase is an indication that the marketplace is becoming more balanced.

"Home prices and inventories are more in balance in most markets – a sign of improving housing health and optimism across much of the country," says Steve Berkowitz, Move's chief executive officer. "As sellers gain confidence, we also are watching spring sales data closely to gauge whether buying activity will be in line with these early indicators."

Some reports showed a cooling market in the early months of 2014. Existing home sales, at 4.59 million units in March, were 7.5 percent below the pace of March 2013 according to The National Association of Realtors (NAR). However, after nine months of stagnation, March pending home sales experienced their first gain – rising 3.4 percent, according to NAR's Pending Home Sales Index.

While prices are rising, age of inventory is dropping faster than the previous year – by 15.7 percent in April – suggesting that properties are selling quickly in many markets and being replaced with new inventory at a quicker pace than last year.

© 2014 Florida Realtors

 

Related Topics: Home sales