Strong buyer demand for homes continued to outpace supply in April. The Buyer Traffic Index hit a high of 72, signifying increasing demand. However, the Seller Traffic Index, an indicator of supply conditions, was unchanged at 41. Source: April REALTORS® Confidence Index (RCI) Survey (http://www.realtor.org/reports/realtors-confidence-index).
In many areas of the country, REALTORS® reported low inventory levels of homes for sale. Tight inventory conditions have been cited as leading to higher prices and reduced time on market.
The housing market recovery continues to be in the news. The latest REALTORS® Confidence Index data rose strongly across all property types in April. The Confidence Index -Current Conditions for single family properties registered at 70. For the first time, the Index for townhouses crossed over the 50 mark, which delineates “moderate” market conditions. The Index for condominiums also increased. Source: April REALTORS® Confidence Index (RCI) Survey (http://www.realtor.org/reports/realtors-confidence-index).
Other indicators of the continued residential market improvement:
- Ninety-five percent of respondents expect constant or higher prices in the next 12 months.
- Median days on market dropped to 46 days in April compared to 83 days a year ago
- Distressed sales: 18 percent of market, down from 28 percent a year ago.
 The Index is calculated as a weighted average of the responses, evaluated at 0-Weak, 50-Moderate, and 100-Strong.
- Welcome to the unofficial start of summer! Our REALTOR® members work long hours and are in need of a break! Sixty percent of members work 40 or more hours a week and 17 percent work 60 or more hours a week. Among appraisers in the industry, 38 percent work more than 60 hours a week.
- Among REALTOR® members, 13 percent own a vacation home.
- Among recent buyers in the market, 11 percent of home buyers bought a vacation home in the last year.
- Perhaps this weekend both recent buyers and our members will get a well needed break.
- And of course a special thank you on this Memorial Day weekend to all of the members who served in the military. Two percent of the association membership were members of the military before becoming REALTORS®.
- For more information, check out the 2013 Member Profile and the 2013 Investment and Vacation Home Buyers Survey.
With strong buyer demand and tight inventory, REALTORS® were generally upbeat about price trends in the coming months. Approximately 94 percent of REALTORS® who responded to the March REALTORS® Confidence Index (RCI) Survey expected constant or increasing prices in the next 12 months.
The graph below shows by state the median expected price changes within the next 12 months based on responses to the March 2013 Survey. Price expectations are most upbeat in the West region where inventory is very low, in Texas, Florida, and Georgia where prices are recovering, and in strong growth states such as Virginia.
What Does This Mean for REALTORS®?
After a relatively long period of declining housing markets we now see markets expected to expand—in both price and sales. Assuming that the economy continues its recovery, one can expect further price improvements this year.
- The typical member had 10 transaction sides in 2011. A side could be either representing the buyer or the seller side of the transaction. This is up from 8 transactions in 2010.
- Six percent of members reported they had no transaction sides, while 22 percent reported they had 21 or more transaction sides. Residential brokers typically had more transaction sides than residential sales agents.
- Commercial specialists typically had 8 commercial deals in 2011.
- The new Member Profile, showing transaction sides in 2012, will be released in just 11 days (May 13, 10 a.m. EST) at the Midyear Meetings.