February 2016 Inventory Near Records Lows

Low inventory was the recurring theme in market reports from Boise Regional REALTORS® (BRR) last year, but recently a new milestone was reached in 2016.

As of January 2016, there were only 1,695 homes for sale in Ada County; just shy of the all-time low of 1,668 in January 2013, based on records that go back to 2005. Looking at February 2016, that number improved slightly to 1,769 homes for sale, but was still a drop of 8.7% compared to February 2015.

Ada Hist Inv Feb 2016

 

The number of homes for sale in Canyon County in February 2016 was at 751, down 25.6% year-over year. The last time inventory in the county reached that point, was June of 2008. The lowest point on record was in July 2007 when inventory was around 560 homes for sale.

Canyon Hist Inv Feb 2016

Looking back to January 2014, at inventory levels by construction types for both Ada and Canyon County, you can see how new construction inventory has remained relatively stable, while existing inventory has fluctuated and fallen year-over-year:

Ada ExNC Inv Feb 2016

Canyon ExNC Inv Feb 2016

The pros and cons of tight inventory.

For sellers looking to move fast and get top dollar, low supply tends to make buyers eager to see homes as soon as they hit the market, make offers quickly, and compete on price and other terms. However, for sellers not sure where they want to move next, the prospect of becoming a buyer in this tight market is making many people think twice before listing.

“We desperately need inventory,” said Carey Farmer, 2016 President of Boise Regional REALTORS® and Associate Broker with Group One. “While many of my sellers want their homes to go quickly, they’re worried they’ll be without a place to live between closings. So, in addition to looking at resale options, I’m showing a lot of new construction where inventory is available. In some instances, we’re looking at short-term rentals as a backup option to potential construction delays, or to give them time to search if they prefer an existing property.”

Yet for sellers who are in the market, many are enjoying the increased prices that are a result of the low supply. In February 2016, the median sales price for existing homes in Ada County was up 7.8% year-over-year, to $212,950. The median sales price for Canyon County existing homes was at $176,114, up 18.5% year-over-year.

Where inventory is more plentiful.

In February, there was 6.0 months of supply of existing homes priced below $100,000 in Ada County, and supply was at 5.1 months or more for homes priced at or above $400,000. Interestingly, existing homes in Canyon County priced between $200,000-250,000, and then above $300,000, were available, filling the lack of inventory in those price ranges in Ada County.

However, inventory is constantly fluctuating. Buyers should seek the advice of a REALTOR® early in their home search to truly understand what’s available in their desired price point, and how fast things are moving.

In both Ada and Canyon Counties, new construction was available in most price points, again, making it a great option for sellers worried about competing in the resale market as buyers. Similarly, sellers with homes in the price points that aren’t moving quite as quickly, should connect with a REALTOR® to ensure they’re priced properly and staged well from day one.

Another way to look at the low inventory, is by analyzing why the demand is currently so high. We’ve discussed this in more detail in previous market reports, but in summary, population growth, in-migration, and low unemployment locally are key factors.

February 2016 Key Metrics

Looking at key metrics for February, closed sales, pending sales, and median sales price were up compared to a year ago, for all single-family homes, when all price points and construction types are combined:

 

 

Metric

Ada County Canyon County
Feb 2015 Feb 2016 % Chg Feb 2015 Feb 2016 % Chg
Closed Sales 509 571 12.2% 223 225 0.9%
Median Sales Price $224,900 $235,000 4.5% $140,000 $152,400 8.9%
Days on Market 67 57 -14.9% 77 59 -23.4%
Pending Sales 1,099 1,379 25.5% 488 579 18.6%
Inventory 1,938 1,769 -8.7% 1,010 751 -25.6%
Months Supply 3.8 3.2 -15.8% 4.4 3.1 -29.5%

Additional information about trends within each county, by price point, by existing and new construction, and by neighborhood, are now available in the February 2016 Market Report. Market snapshot graphics for Ada County and Canyon County are also available.

 

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This report is provided by the Ada County Association of REALTORS® (ACAR), which began doing business as Boise Regional REALTORS® (BRR) in 2016. BRR is the largest local REALTOR® association in Idaho, with over 3,600 members and two wholly-owned subsidiaries — the Intermountain Multiple Listing Service, Inc. (IMLS) and the REALTORS® Community Foundation. This report is based primarily on the public statistics provided by the IMLS, available at: intermountainmls.com/Statistics/Static.aspx. These statistics are based upon information secured by the agent from the owner or their representative. The accuracy of this information, while deemed reliable, has not been verified and is not guaranteed. These statistics are not intended to represent the total number of properties sold in the counties or cities during the specified time period. The IMLS and BRR provide these statistics for purposes of general market analysis but makes no representations as to the past or future appreciation or depreciation of property values. The term “single-family homes” includes detached single-family homes with or without acreage, as classified in the IMLS. These numbers do not include activity for condominiums, townhomes, land, commercial, or multi-family properties (like apartment buildings). If you are a consumer, please contact a REALTOR® to get the most current and accurate information specific to your situation.

 

Distributed to the media on March 12, 2016