Sales of single-family houses and condominiums are picking up in the Hartford metro area but not enough to make much of a dent in the properties on the market, a new study today says.
The Hartford metro area saw just a 4.6 percent overall decline in inventory compared with a year ago, ranking it dead last when ranked among the country’s 101 largest metro areas for declines in inventory by zillow.com, the real estate tracking firm.
The Hartford metro area includes Hartford, Tolland and Middlesex counties. Each of those counties saw year-over-year increases in sales of single-family houses and condos in August, according to The Warren Group.
Nationally, inventory levels fell 19.4 percent. The Fresno, Calif. metro area saw the biggest decline, at 49.4 percent.
Inventory levels are watched closely as indicator of recovery following a recession. Fewer properties on the market typically increase competition among buyers and push up prices they are willing to pay, especially for properties in the best locations and with the most updates
A recent report by the Greater Hartford Association of Realtors painted a somewhat brighter picture of the area’s inventory. The 57-town area tracked by the association does not line up perfectly with zillow’s county analysis, but the association covers many towns in the three counties.
In August, the number of single-family houses on the market fell by 6 percent on a year-over-year basis, even with a one-percent increase in new listings.
Based on the number of closed sales in August and the 6,598 houses for sale at the end of the month, there is a little over a seven-month supply of houses on the market. That’s still a buyer’s market, but barely — a six-month supply is said to favor neither buyer nor seller.