We’re hearing again and again (and again and again) that there’s just no inventory. No homes for sale. People love repeating what they hear. We like to dig in and get data to see what’s really happening (can I please hire the team from fivethirtyeight.com to do some research for us?!)
The truth is that there are not many homes for sale now.. And there have been, generally speaking, fewer properties coming on the market.
These numbers are from the beginning of January for each year. The town numbers are pretty small, so teensy little changes in actual inventory make for big changes in the percent change. There’s a wide range. Washington County actually had 8% more listings in 2022 than in 2020. But statewide, new listings in January were down almost 25%. Ouch.
I hear you…that’s just not even a whole month’s worth of data. And it was January too, for crying out loud. No one lists their home for sale in January! Actually, people do. And buyers buy them. Don’t listen to those who say that no one wants to buy a house or move in the winter. That might mean that they don’t want to buy or move in winter. Or it might mean that their Realtor doesn’t want to show property in the winter. (Sidenote: Green Light Real Estate Realtors don’t let the cold and the snow stop us or our clients. We’ve been known to snowmobile, snowshoe, and even ride in the bed of a pickup to get to property for our buyers and sellers!)
Ok, I’m back on topic.
Here’s a look at new listings in the fourth quarter (Oct-Dec) of each of the past three years.
With this view, we get more data, and therefore can draw more reliable insights. Yep. Definitely fewer new listings coming on the market in Central Vermont (and statewide) this year than in years past. A 30% decline in new listings for the fourth quarter in 2021 compared to 2019? That’s a lot of houses that didn’t get on the market.
The statewide Q4 differential was almost 10%. Again, that’s a lot of houses that didn’t get on the market and in front of potential (eager, willing, and able) buyers.
Sometimes when I pull this type of research, I’m looking to debunk what people are saying. But data is data. In this case, what we’re hearing about a low inventory level is absolutely true. Data doesn’t care about what we want it to say. It just is. Very Zen.
A quick takeaway?
Sellers–ohmygosh, if you know anything about supply and demand, you know that the demand is high and the supply is low. Which means higher prices. If you’re thinking of making a move, call or email Green Light Real Estate and let us put our data-backed valuations, experience, marketing, and negotiating skilll to work for you to get your house sold at the best price and terms.
Buyers–don’t despair! There are fewer houses for sale, yes. But there are houses for sale. Now more than ever it’s to your advantage to have a crystal clear plan and strategy for how you’re going to approach the buying process.