4th Look at Local Housing Markets in December
California sales down 15.7%, Inventory down 24.1% Year-over-year
This is the fourth look at local markets in December. I’m tracking about 30 local housing markets in the US. Some of the 30 markets are states, and some are metropolitan areas. I’ll update these tables throughout the month as additional data is released.
My view is that if the housing market is slowing, it will show up in inventory (not yet!).
The following data is important, especially active inventory and new listings. One of the key factors for house prices is supply and tracking local inventory reports will help us understand what is happening with supply.
On a national basis, we will see record low inventory over the Winter. I’ll be watching to see if inventory follows the normal seasonal pattern and bottoms in January or February.
California home sales and prices ease in December
California doesn’t report monthly sales or inventory, but here is the press release from the California Association of Realtors® (C.A.R.): California home sales and prices ease in December, as 2021 state housing market posts best performance in more than a decade, C.A.R. reports
Closed escrow sales of existing, single-family detached homes in California totaled a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 429,860 in December, according to information collected by C.A.R. from more than 90 local REALTOR® associations and MLSs statewide. The statewide annualized sales figure represents what would be the total number of homes sold during 2021 if sales maintained the December pace throughout the year. It is adjusted to account for seasonal factors that typically influence home sales.
December’s sales pace was down 5.4 percent on a monthly basis from 454,450 in November and was down 15.7 percent from a year ago, when 509,750 homes were sold on an annualized basis. Despite the sixth straight year-over-year sales decrease, for the year as a whole, annual home sales rose to a preliminary 444,520 closed escrow sales in California, up 7.9 percent from 2020’s pace of 411,870. …
California’s Unsold Inventory Index (UII) fell in December to its lowest level on record since C.A.R. began tracking this figure in January 1988, as active listings fell 24.1 percent from last year. December’s UII was 1.2 months and was below 1.4 months in the same month of2020. The index indicates the number of months it would take to sell the supply of homes on the market at the current rate of sales.
Active Inventory in December
Here is a summary of active listings for these housing markets in December. Inventory was down 19.2% in December month-over-month (MoM) from November, and down 29.2% year-over-year (YoY).
Inventory almost always declines seasonally in December, so the MoM decline is not a surprise. Last month, these markets were down 25.5% YoY, so the YoY decline in December is larger than in November. This isn’t indicating a slowing market.
Notes for all tables:
New additions to table in BOLD.
Northwest (Seattle), North Texas (Dallas), and Santa Clara (San Jose), Jacksonville, Source: Northeast Florida Association of REALTORS®
Totals do not include Denver (included in state total).
Please share with your friends and colleagues!
New Listings in December
And here is a table for new listings in December. For these areas, new listings were down 10.4% YoY.
Last month, new listings in these markets were up 2.7% YoY.
Closed Sales in December
And a table of December sales. Sales were down 5.5% YoY, Not Seasonally Adjusted (NSA).
Note that there was one fewer selling day in December ‘21 compared to December ‘20, so the Seasonally Adjusted (SA) number will show less of a YoY decline than the NSA numbers.
Much more to come!