27 February 2012

Fort Lauderdale leads Inventory Decline

Housing inventories declined month-to-month

The streak of declining inventories of homes listed for sale nationwide continues into its eighth month. Inventories in January fell 6.6 percent to 1.77 million last month from December 2011, the Wall Street Journal reported from a Realtor.com tally.

The largest year-over-year decline occurred in Fort Lauderdale, Fla, in January. Compared with one year earlier, listings were down by a whopping 55%.

Other cities which saw large annual declines were Miami, Phoenix, and Bakersfield, Calif., where the number of listings fell by nearly half. Both New York and Philadelphia ranked among cities with the smallest declines: 1.7 percent and 3 percent, respectively.

Month-over-month, four Florida-based markets saw increases between December 2011 and last month. On the other hand, both San Francisco and Boston showed respective 16 and 10 percent declines since December.

The Wall Street Journal said that low housing inventories are a normal part of any housing recovery. But it remains to be seen whether these figures show true signs of improvement in the market. [WSJ]

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