Home Inventories Are Down

This is good news but also pay attention to the amount of foreclosures that aren’t on the market.  According to The WSJ, The number of homes listed for sale in many U.S. cities continued to fall in April in what some analysts see as a sign that the market may be nearing a bottom. But the picture is clouded by uncertainty over how many foreclosed properties will hit the market.  The supply of homes for sale in 29 major metropolitan areas at the end of April was down 3.6% from a month earlier, according to figures compiled by ZipRealty Inc., a real-estate brokerage firm based in Emeryville, Calif. The ZipRealty data cover all single-family homes, condominiums and town houses listed on local multiple-listing services in metro areas where the firm operates.  Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, among the biggest owners of foreclosed homes, typically have only about 35% to 50% of those homes listed for sale at any given time, according to industry estimates. At one of the nation’s largest banks, about 60% of the foreclosed homes are listed, according to a person familiar with the situation. Some foreclosed homes aren’t listed because they are being offered for rental; others are awaiting repairs or are subject to litigation or other delays.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124209179437709297.html#mod=todays_us_personal_journal