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Home Sales Pick up Speed

It appears buyers have some serious obstacles to overcome this year. Both home prices and sales are on the rise, jumping 7 percent and 5.6 percent respectively in January alone, according to recent statistics from Redfin.

The increases are likely due to a steep drop in inventory, which fell 7 percent since 2015—the largest decline in a single-year period since April 2013. New listings were also down more than 5 percent.

This lack of inventory is also increasing the speed of sales, too. In fact, January was the fastest month on record since 2010. The average home sold in just 59 days that month, compared to 73 days in January 2015.

“Buyers jumped through three hurdles last month: rising prices, low inventory, and a fast market,” said Redfin Chief Economist Nela Richardson. “Sellers, however, are still warming the bench as the supply picture looks weaker than demand. This was the first January in three years in which new listings fell short of the previous year.”

In metros where the median sale price was under $300K, sales growth hit the double-digits. This included Lakeland, Florida, where sales jumped nearly 29 percent; Poughkeepsie, New York (28 percent); and Memphis, Tennessee (26.1 percent). The biggest drop in sales was in Columbia, South Carolina, with a year-over-year decline of 65 percent year.

The highest price growth was in Dallas-Fort Worth, where prices rose 17 percent compared to the year before. The only two metros to see a year-over-year price drop were Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Allentown, Pennsylvania.

Overall, Denver saw the fastest market, with 50 percent of all homes selling in just 23 days. Oakland, California, and Seattle both had speedy markets as well, with homes seeing an average of 27 and 26 days on market, respectively.

To see the full report, visit Redfin.com.

About Author: Aly J. Yale

Aly J. Yale is a freelance writer and editor based in Fort Worth, Texas. She has worked for various newspapers, magazines, and publications across the nation, including The Dallas Morning News and Addison Magazine. She has also worked with both the Five Star Institute and REO Red Book, as well as various other mortgage industry clients on content strategy, blogging, marketing, and more.

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