Over the last few weeks, the markets have shown signs that a slowdown may finally be imminent, following a busy summer that has pushed the buying frenzy well past the normal seasonal boundaries. According to realtor.com®’s Weekly Housing Report for the week ending Oct. 4, there is continued improvement in newly listed homes and a “slight softening” of buyer interest—both indicators of an upcoming slowdown.
For the week, newly listed homes were down 2 percent year-over-year, an improvement over the week of Oct. 17 when new listings were down 6 percent YoY. While the total number of homes available for sale is still down (by 38 percent YoY), this week marks the sixth consecutive period of steady or improving declines.
While the low inventory is still pushing prices up, there are price reductions on the horizon. For the week, listing prices were up 12.2 percent, with the typical home for sale priced at $350,000—$38,000 above last year. The share of price reductions for the week was 5.5 percent, getting closer to the 6.5 percent average we saw last year.
Overall, housing conditions are more balanced. According to realtor.com®, the Housing Market Recovery Index reached a new high of 112.4 nationwide—124 points above the pre-COVID baseline.
“The number of buyers in the market remains well above the seasonal norm, but this week’s data shows sellers may be losing some of their grip when it comes to having the upper hand. For the first time since June, we saw an unseasonably large share of price reductions and a slight softening in buyer demand,” said Javier Vivas, director of economic research for realtor.com®. “Months of double-digit price gains and a record low number of homes for sale may finally be translating into buyer fatigue in many markets. If this continues, we may see price reductions ramp up and quick home sales ease through the end of the year.”