How Low Can Portland Metro Housing Inventory Go?

RMLS July InventoryI started real estate in 2003. Only twice, has inventory hit 1.2 months: December 2015 and NOW! It rocketed to 19.2 months in January 2009. Inventory is the ratio of active listings to closed sales. If I had 100 listings and sold ten the prior month, I’d have 10 months of inventory. Tradition said that six months was the balance between buyer’s and seller’s market but I feel that number dropped closer to four months after the last market crash.  Regardless, we’re deep in seller market territory.

Also of note: the average sales price cracked the $500,000 mark for the first time.  The $400,000 mark was broken in mid 2016.

Taken verbatim from the new RMLS Market Action report:

New listings (4,236) increased 6.8% from the 3,966 listed in July 2019, and increased 15.8% from the 3,658 listed in June 2020.

Pending sales (3,656) increased 21.9% from the 2,998 offers accepted in July 2019, and increased 0.1% from the 3,654 offers accepted in June 2020.

Closed sales (3,391) increased 15.2% from the 2,944 closings in July 2019, and increased 25.2% from the 2,709 closings in June 2020.

There’s some wacky, contradicting stuff going on here:

  • Interest rates are as low as I’ve ever seen.
  • Unemployment is as high as I’ve ever seen.
  • There is uncertain political uncertainty.
  • There is Covid 19.
  • We are spending more time in our homes than ever before.
  • The stock market has rebounded like it never heard of Covid 19.
  • The U.S. economy is officially in a recession.
  • Multiple offers even in the $700,000+ range are not unusual.
  • Condos are selling at a much slower pace than single family homes.

Today, the market is as strong as ever.  Tomorrow?  Who knows?


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