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Pool of homes for sale across metro Phoenix is drying up

PHOENIX – Fewer than 13,000 homes are for sale in metro Phoenix, the lowest level since the start of a housing bubble 15 years ago, according to a Valley realtor.

“We only have 12,626 listings,” Diane Brennan of Coldwell Banker in Scottsdale told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Wednesday. That figure excludes homes under contract.

Brennan said the inventory hasn’t been this low since 2001.

“Nowadays we have 50% more people, we have more housing, so this is really, really worrisome,” she said.

Brennan noted that 2004 was the start of a housing bubble that burst two years later, but she said the real estate business has changed since then so a crash isn’t as much of a concern now.

Financing is more difficult to obtain these days and appraisers are more conservative, she said.

“They are keeping their appraisals at a level where we’re not seeing prices skyrocket like we did before the crash,” she said.

Even if the low inventory doesn’t portend a crash, it’s a problem for buyers and impacts anybody who rents.

“People need places to live and they want to own their own homes vs. rent, and that pushes rental prices up,” Brennan said.

On the flip side, things are good for sellers.

“For those that do decide to put their home on the market, it’s incredibly easy to sell,” Brennan said. “We’re seeing multiple offers at different price points.”

She said homes with fair prices listed for under $500K are selling quickly.

“For example, I had a property that was $300,000 and received seven offers in a week,” she said.

Brennan said homeowners who are considering selling but waiting because they think the market is slower in the hot summer months need to rethink things.

“So if you’re on the fence and you’re thinking, ‘Well, I’ll just wait to sell,’ you might want to do that right now to take advantage of this and unload your property and give it to someone else who is in dire need of a home.” she said.

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