February 2021 Monthly Housing Market Trends Report: More Than 200,000 New Listings Are Missing From U.S. Housing Market

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  • National inventory declined by 48.6% over last year.
  • The inventory of newly listed properties declined by 24.5% nationally and by 23.5% for large metros over the past year. 
  • The February national median listing price was $353,000, up 13.7% compared to last year. Large metros saw an average price gain of 11.5% compared to last year.
  • Nationally, the typical home spent 70 days on the market in February, 11 days less than the same time last year. 

Realtor.com®’s February housing data release hints at a competitive spring season, despite market disruptions from severe winter storms seen this past month. While the pace of newly listed homes continues to slow and was worsened by severe weather conditions, homes continue to sell more quickly than last year and listing prices continue to grow by double digits. 

Severe Winter Storms Temporarily Disrupt the Supply of Homes Further

Nationally, the inventory of homes for sale in February decreased by 48.6% over the past year, a higher rate of decline compared to the 42.6% drop in January. This amounted to 496,000 fewer homes for sale compared to February of last year. Severe winter storms across the country limited market activity, resulting in newly listed homes declining further, by 24.5% year-over-year. In the 3rd week of February, in the midst of these storms, new listings dropped by 35.2% year-over-year. They then recovered to 26.9% in February’s final week as conditions eased.

According to our data, 14.8% of the year’s total new listings came to market in January and February in 2017-2019, and new listings in these months were an even bigger share in 2020 as COVID scared off many would-be sellers later in the year. Approximately 207,000 fewer homes were newly listed for sale during the first two months of 2021, compared with the average for those two months over the last four years. New listings would need to increase by 25% year-over-year in March and April to bring the year-to-date figure back to April 2020’s levels.

Housing inventory in the 50 largest U.S. metros overall declined by 47.4% over last year in February, greater than last month’s 41.8% decline. In February, new listings declined much further on a year-over-year basis in all regions except for the West. In the South, where Texan metros saw the biggest hit to newly listed homes in the 3rd week of February, newly listed homes declined by 26.1% on a year-over-year basis. While the South didn’t see the greatest reduction in new listings among regions overall, in the third week of February, newly listed homes had dropped by 46.3% year-over-year, more than the decelerations seen in the Midwest and Northeast.  

Markets that saw the largest year-over-year decline in newly listed homes for the month of February included Oklahoma City (-46.6%), Kansas City (-45.3%), and Milwaukee (-39.8%). Only San Jose (+13.6%), San Francisco (+1.1%), and Denver (+1.1%) saw newly listed homes increase. Overall, newly listed homes in the largest 50 metros decreased by 23.5% compared to last year. During the third week of February, when metros across the country saw severe winter weather, new listings were down most in Texan metros such as Austin (-87.8% year-over-year), Dallas (-79.8%), San Antonio (-77.2%), and Houston (-73.5%).

Homes Continue to Sell More Quickly than Last Year 

Homes for sale in February continued to sell more quickly than last year, as buyer demand still remained on a strong footing. The typical home spent 70 days on the market this February, which is 11 days less than last year. 

In the 50 largest U.S. metros, the typical home spent 48 days on the market, and homes spent 12 days less on the market, on average, compared to last February. Among these 50 largest metros, the time a typical property spends on the market has decreased most in the South (-18 days), and the Northeast (-13 days), followed by the West (-12 days), the Midwest (-10 days). 

Among larger metropolitan areas, homes saw the greatest decline in time spent on the market compared to last year in Austin (-36 days); Charlotte (-28 days); and Portland, OR (-27 days).    

Listing Price Growth Remains in the Double-Digits

The median national home listing price grew by 13.7% over last year, to $353,000 in February, lower than last month’s growth rate of 15.4%. However, this slight deceleration was driven more by a change in the mix of homes for sale, since the nation’s median listing price per square foot grew by 19.4% compared to last year, an acceleration from the 17.5% growth seen last month. Moreover, at $353,000, February’s median listing price surpassed last year’s peak unseasonably early. 

Listing prices in the nation’s largest metros grew by an average of 11.5% compared to last year, also slightly higher than last month’s rate of 10.9%. Among the largest 50 metros, listing prices are increasing most in northeastern markets, where they are now growing at an average rate of 16.7% over last year, compared to a growth rate of 11.7% for western metros, 10.9% for midwestern metros, and 9.5% for southern metros.  

Austin (+37.2%), Rochester (27.6%), and Buffalo (+25.0%) posted the highest year-over-year median list price growth in February. Miami (-2.5% year-over-year), Denver (-1.7%), and Orlando (-1.1%) were the only top 50 metros to see their median listing price decline year-over-year in February.   

Regional Statistics (50 Largest Metro Combined Average)

RegionActive Listing Count YoYNew Listing Count YoYMedian Listing Price YoYMedian Days on Market Y-Y
Midwest-50.7%-32.3%10.9%-10 days
Northeast-41.7%-25.6%16.8%-13 days
South-54.9%-26.1%9.5%-18 days
West-34.5%-8.5%11.7%-12 days

Metros With the Largest Decline in Newly Listed Homes

MetroNew Listing Count YoYActive Listing Count YoYMedian Listing Price YoYMedian Listing PriceMedian Days on Market Y-YMedian Days on Market
Oklahoma City, Okla.-46.6%-56.7%16.8%$301,050-845
Kansas City, Mo.-Kan.-45.3%-57.0%16.3%$383,725-2174
Milwaukee-Waukesha-West Allis, Wis.-39.8%-51.9%1.6%$324,950-651
Cincinnati, Ohio-Ky.-Ind.-38.6%-51.5%17.1%$332,450-462
Raleigh, N.C.-35.4%-64.3%11.5%$407,000-2539
Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, Tenn.-35.2%-58.8%10.5%$409,900-927
Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, Ill.-Ind.-Wis.-35.1%-45.7%11.0%$354,950-243
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas-34.6%-64.2%9.8%$373,267-2037
Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, Conn.-34.3%-42.7%12.6%$309,450-2252
Louisville/Jefferson County, Ky.-Ind.-32.9%-55.8%3.0%$262,450-2143
Indianapolis-Carmel-Anderson, Ind.-32.9%-56.4%3.2%$283,607-1467
Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Mich-32.1%-56.3%20.1%$275,000-654
Pittsburgh, Pa.-31.2%-52.3%N/A$249,950-1087
Jacksonville, Fla.-31.2%-65.1%6.4%$340,445-2450
Cleveland-Elyria, Ohio-30.2%-55.2%10.8%$209,950-1666
Rochester, N.Y.-29.9%-47.5%27.6%$293,400449
St. Louis, Mo.-Ill.-29.7%-43.1%18.9%$261,400-584
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, Pa.-N.J.-Del.-Md.-29.3%-46.0%11.8%$329,900-762
Providence-Warwick, R.I.-Mass.-28.9%-57.9%15.4%$449,000-2244
Memphis, Tenn.-Miss.-Ark.-28.7%-56.3%1.3%$240,000-2257
Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fla.-28.0%-62.2%9.0%$305,000-2339
Virginia Beach-Norfolk-Newport News, Va.-N.C.-26.8%-52.9%1.6%$319,900-1839
Buffalo-Cheektowaga-Niagara Falls, N.Y.-26.4%-51.4%25.0%$249,900-1850
New York-Newark-Jersey City, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa.-26.3%-13.4%12.6%$629,500N/A105
Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, Md.-25.1%-58.8%0.8%$322,450-2245
Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Ga.-24.3%-58.2%16.2%$377,500-1937
Richmond, Va.-24.2%-50.9%19.3%$389,968-1743
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, Fla.-23.2%-42.5%-1.1%$321,500-563
Columbus, Ohio-23.1%-53.1%8.4%$324,950-1940
Austin-Round Rock, Texas-22.4%-73.7%37.2%$494,000-3626
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, Texas-21.6%-43.9%11.3%$340,624-1150
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif.-20.1%-64.9%18.9%$498,000-2734
San Antonio-New Braunfels, Texas-19.7%-59.5%7.8%$312,500-2547
Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, Minn.-Wis.-19.3%-41.9%0.7%$377,450-1436
Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, N.C.-S.C.-18.5%-54.9%10.9%$386,450-2837
Portland-Vancouver-Hillsboro, Ore.-Wash.-17.1%-49.3%8.7%$527,250-2732
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, Ariz.-16.7%-62.7%17.4%$469,500-2127
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, Wash.-16.5%-40.8%12.1%$672,386-1326
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, Fla.-16.0%-32.9%-2.5%$399,450391
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-Va.-Md.-W. Va.-15.1%-35.9%1.0%$499,900-336
Sacramento–Roseville–Arden-Arcade, Calif.-14.9%-53.6%17.8%$589,000-2021
San Diego-Carlsbad, Calif.-14.9%-22.8%17.2%$877,495N/A76
Birmingham-Hoover, Ala.-13.7%-44.3%5.3%$269,950-1853
New Orleans-Metairie, La.-13.5%-42.2%15.1%$327,450-1763
Boston-Cambridge-Newton, Mass.-N.H.-12.7%-32.8%15.4%$692,500-1838
Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nev.-9.0%-30.4%5.2%$344,950-245
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, Calif.-0.5%-18.6%23.5%$1,184,500167
Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, Colo.1.1%-42.0%-1.7%$549,950-1523
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, Calif.1.1%-4.3%7.5%$1,020,444523
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, Calif.13.6%10.4%2.4%$1,228,400-517

*Some data for Pittsburgh, New York, and San Diego has been excluded due to data quality.

Published by Realtor.com

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