Market Summary for the Beginning of June
Here are the basics - the ARMLS numbers for June 1, 2021 compared with June 1, 2020 for all areas & types:
We note that the number of active listings is slightly higher than last month. That is entirely because June 1 fell on a Tuesday while May 1 fell on a Saturday. Saturdays tends to have much higher counts because of all the new listings activated on Thursday and Friday. In contrast, Tuesdays and Wednesdays have the lowest counts every week. If we compare the same day of the week, the number of active listings is up from last month by about 7%. When supply is this low, the signal to noise ratio is poor, so we have to look more closely to get a correct impression. Supply is definitely rising, but not at a rate to help buyers very much, or to raise an alarm. It is rising because new listings are coming along at a faster rate than normal. However most of them are getting offers in the first week and they do not last very long. The market remains very hot even though it has cooled since March.
The demand numbers are moderating, with monthly sales down 5% compared with last month. However listings under contract are up slightly which means the downward trend in demand has stalled for now.
The rate of change in both supply and demand are both now moderate, but the rate of change for prices remains very high. We are seeing appreciation rates of 38% if you use price per sq. ft. or 33% if you use monthly medians. Both of these are flattering because part of the rise is due to high end homes taking a larger share of the market than normal for June. But however you measure them, home prices are at nose-bleed levels and will continue to rise while supply remains dramatically below normal. It is 76% below normal at the moment.
The period since June 2020 has been a painful 12 months for buyers and many are likely to be feeling bruised and beaten up. It would not be surprising if demand weakened further because of this, but withdrawing from the market is unlikely to be wise from a financial perspective. Prices still have a quite a lot of upward momentum and mortgage rates could easily move higher than today. Local buyers need to remember that to a buyer from California or Washington, Phoenix still looks like amazingly good value for money, even after another 20% price hike.
And what is your alternative - rents continue to climb at a steep rate and are unlikely to stop rising. At least if you buy a pricey home today you will benefit from the price growth tomorrow in the form of home equity. None of your rent payment will do that.