West Coast leads in cities with lowest for-sale housing inventory
The U.S. housing inventory shortage continues to be most acute on the West Coast, with the region housing half of the top 10 cities that have the smallest share of their total housing stock available for sale, according to a new survey by real estate listing website Realtor.com covering the country’s 150 largest housing markets.
Seattle took the No. 1 spot, with the percentage of for-sale housing stock at 0.4%, down 13.4% from 2015 to 2016. Eugene, OR, followed close behind with 0.6% of its inventory for sale, down 27.3% for the period. Cities in the Midwest and Great Lakes regions, including Buffalo, NY, Detroit and Fort Wayne, IN, also made the list.
- San Francisco, which has so far headlined the affordable housing crisis, did not make the survey’s top 10, with a 4% increase in for-sale homes from 2015 to 2016 suggesting that inventory conditions there are easing.
Realtor.com's new research links up with other data showing that cities on the West Coast, particularly Seattle, are facing some of the steepest home-price increases amid severe inventory shortages. There, the burgeoning tech-sector is emboldening the labor market, swelling population levels and putting additional pressure on languishing housing stocks.
Earlier this month, Housing Wire reported on a new forecast by Veros Real Estate Solutions ranking Seattle as the hottest housing market in 2017, with home-price appreciation of 10.9% expected. Meanwhile, real estate listing website Redfin found that Seattle is home to one-third of the country’s neighborhoods in which buyers have the hardest time finding, and affording, housing.
The widening gap in affordability has forced city officials to explore measures aimed at alleviating the issue. This past summer, the Seattle City Council approved regulations requiring builders to incorporate more affordable units in projects. And in November, the council followed up a $270 million levy passed in August with a 30-year, $29 million affordable housing bond
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