Just last week, the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) reported an increase in pending home sales in every region in the country. The number of contracts signed in May for existing homes jumped 13% from this time last year.
A big drop in inventories of homes for sale across the nation has led to a buying frenzy in some sought-after neighborhoods, real estate professionals report. A gradual gain in home prices is also following suit, they say.
NAR projects a 3% nationwide rise in existing-home prices this year and a 5.7% rise next year.
Additionally, more buyers are being met with a shrinking supply of homes on the market. This is also the case in the Southwest Florida Market. In Naples, Florida alone, inventory was reduced by 13% in May 2012 over May 2011. (June 2012 numbers are due out this month from John R. Wood Realtors, which covers the Naples, Bonita Springs and Estero Markets.)
Inventories of homes for sale appear to be lowest for less expensive properties, at which investors and first-time home buyers often buy, real estate professionals report.
Several other housing markets are now reporting multiple offers and bidding wars surfacing, due to the lack of inventory in some markets. Homes below $250K priced realistically are attracting large numbers of offers in a short time, and many exceed the asking price. Industry insiders appear less concerned about the shadow inventory of distressed homes that have yet to hit the market, stating that it is not affecting the market one way of another.
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