Most years, when the calendar flips over to January, it’s like the “new inventory on” switch has been flipped. In 2009 and 2010, by the end of January there were 8-12% more listings on the market than there were at the beginning of the month. This year though, things seem to be shaping up differently:
Using the log from my sidebar inventory tracker, I indexed each year’s inventory to January 1. Note how much slower inventory is growing this year compared to 2009 and 2010. By January 10th, 2009 had 4% more listings than January 1, 2010 had 8% more listings, but 2011 has just 2% more listings.
I’m expecting sales to pick up this year as prices continue to correct to sustainable levels, but if the inventory on the market is the same stale and/or overpriced junk that’s been festering for months, it’s going to be difficult to excite 2011’s buyers.