The National Association of Realtors' most recent measure of existing-home sales found the inventory of available homes for sale improved 2.7 percent in September from one month earlier. The increase is an encouraging sign, as too few available homes has been an ongoing issue for the market – one that has frustrated buyers, limited sales, and driven prices higher. Still, even with last month's improvement, total housing inventory is down 8.1 percent from where it was last year at the same time. It's also significantly lower than it was pre-pandemic.
Lawrence Yun, NAR's chief economist, says supply and affordability are slowing sales. “As has been the case throughout this year, limited inventory and low housing affordability continue to hamper home sales,” Yun said. In September, sales of existing homes fell 2 percent month-over-month and are now 15.4 percent below last year at the same time. Sales were down in three of four regions, with only the Northeast posting a gain from August.