Home Prices Surge to Two-Year High, Disasters Slow New Listings

September 17, 2020

Home shoppers may have an even tougher time finding a home to purchase in the weeks and months to come, as home prices continue to climb and even fewer new listings arrive on the market.

Home price growth has reached a two-year high, while natural disasters brought the number of homes for sale even lower, according to realtor.com®’s Weekly Housing Report, reflecting the week ending Sept. 12. Still-strong buyer demand but lack of supply prompted median listing prices to jump 11.1% year over year.

“Today’s home buyers face some daunting challenges,” says Danielle Hale, realtor.com®’s chief economist. “Home price growth just set a new high of 11% with no indication of a slowdown and there are nearly 40% fewer homes for sale than this time last year.

“Inventory is so low that any disruption, such as this week's wildfires and hurricanes, feels even more stifling for would-be home buyers,” Hale continues. “Although this year is anything but typical, we expect inventory to follow the usual seasonal pattern of tapering off in the next few weeks, but we don't expect buyer demand to drop off as much as usual. Buyers hoping to take advantage of less competition during the housing off-season will likely be disappointed and could find it even more difficult to find a home."

The number of new listings for the week ending Sept. 12 fell 17% compared to a year ago. Meanwhile, the total number of homes available for sale has plunged 39% compared to this same time a year ago.

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