RE/MAX: September Homebuyer Demand Strong, By Historical Standards


After a seasonal drop-off in August, home sales in September fell again, reported RE/MAX, Denver-but still represented the highest September level in nine years.

The company’s National Housing Report said home sales fell by 11.7 percent from August to September, matching previous yearly data. But sales increased by 2.0 percent from a month ago, matching the best September since the company began tracking data.

“The market usually sees fewer home sales in September, as buyers make a seasonal transition from summer to fall,” said Dave Liniger, RE/MAX CEO, Chairman of the Board and Co-Founder. “Even so, sales were the highest of any September since we launched our Housing Report in 2008. Also, price increases continue to be in the moderate 5-percent year-over-year range. Overall, this is a market that most everyone can be satisfied with.”

The September Median Sales Price of $219,780 was 5.1% above a year ago, with not a single metro posting a year-over-year price drop. Largest price gains were reported in Birmingham, Ala. (17.0%) and Miami (15.2%).

The average Months Supply of Inventory rose from 3.4 in August to 3.9, the highest since February. But it is still far below the 6 months’ supply considered to be a market balanced equally between buyers and sellers. Eight markets, predominantly in the Northeast, showed a six-month or more supply. Meanwhile, 19 showed three months or less, the majority in the West.

Thirty-four markets experienced an increase in sales year-over-year, with six markets seeing double-digit increases, including Trenton, N.J. (17.9%), Augusta, Maine (14.1%), Des Moines, Iowa (13.6%), Raleigh-Durham, N.C. (11.6%), Boise, Idaho (11.3%) and Seattle (10.6%).

Average Days on Market for homes sold in September rose to 56, up two days from the average in August, but down five days from a year ago. September marked the 42nd consecutive month with a Days on Market average of 80 or less. Metro areas with the lowest Days on Market were Omaha, Denver and San Francisco at 25, 27 and 28 respectively. The highest Days on Market averages continue to be in Augusta at 128 and Des Moines at 98.

The number of homes for sale in September fell by 2.6% from August and by 15.1% from a year ago. The Months Supply of Inventory was 3.9, compared to both last month and last year at 3.4 and 4.5 respectively. Only six metro areas reported a Months Supply of Inventory at 6.0 or above. The markets with the lowest Months Supply of Inventory are San Francisco, 1.6, Seattle, 1.7 and Denver, 1.7.