SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Bob Gourley, Lori MacVittie, RealWire News Distribution, Cynthia Dunlop, Mark O'Neill

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Realtor.com® January 2014 Housing Report Points to Early Start to Home Buying Season

Year-over-year data shows inventory increases and sustained price growth

SAN JOSE, Calif., Feb. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Realtor.com®, the leader in online real estate operated by Move, Inc. (NASDAQ: MOVE), today released its National Housing Trend Report for January 2014. The 2014 home buying season has begun on one positive note, despite severe weather conditions across much of the country, showing an uptick in inventory a month earlier than the 2013 home buying season. 

Data from realtor.com® reveals the median list price for January 2014 is 8.3 percent above levels observed in January 2013. The number of properties for sale is up 3.1 percent and the median age of inventory is essentially unchanged, indicating a transition to a less frenzied market compared to January 2013.

"January's start compared to year-ago levels is an encouraging sign of sellers' interest, particularly given the adverse conditions brought on by the polar vortex," said Errol Samuelson, president of realtor.com®. "We saw the tight-supply market of last fall carry all the way into November – later than is typically expected – and this early rise in inventory is a welcome trend.  The sustained median list price growth supports the gains we saw last year, and sellers are responding with confidence in that consistency.  We will continue to watch inventory movement in the coming months as we move further into typical seasonal patterns, but anticipate a more balanced buying market."

The national median existing home price is projected to rise about 5 to 6 percent in 2014, according to the National Association of REALTORS®, which cites job growth and large pent-up demand as drivers of the market in light of rising mortgage rates. 

National Key Market Indicators for January 2014


January 2014

Year-over-Year Percentage Change

Month-over-Month Percentage Change

Number of Listings

1,672,799

3.1 percent

-3.3 percent

Median Age of Inventory

115 days

0.0 percent

 2.7 percent

Median List Price

$195,000

8.3 percent

0.1 percent

National Perspective

  • Inventory increasing: At the national level, for-sale inventories are now 3.1 percent higher than they were one year ago, and the rise in inventory is spreading to more markets across the country.  In January 2013, just 8 markets registered increases in inventory. This January, 83 markets (58 percent) of the 143 markets tracked by realtor.com showed increases in inventory, year over year. While the next few months will be critical to watch, these trends suggest a more balanced housing market going into the 2014 home-buying season.
  • Price increases more widespread: Median list price rose a healthy 8.3 percent in January 2014 compared to the same time last year.  In January 2014, 44 markets saw year-over-year list price increases of 10 percent or more, compared to January 2013, when 24 markets registered double-digit increases in median list price.  The number of declining markets in terms of median list price dropped, from 58 in January 2013 to just 13 in January 2014. 
  • Days on market stabilizing: Median age of inventory remained steady in January 2014 compared to the same time last year, at 115 days. However, the number of markets showing year-over-year declines in age of inventory has dropped significantly, from 133 markets in January 2013 to 78 markets in January 2014. 56 markets showed year-on-year increases in days on market in January 2014, compared to just nine markets in January 2013. 

Local Market Highlights

  • California, Detroit, and Nevada markets continue to dominate the list of areas experiencing the largest year-over-year increases in median list prices - with increases of 20 percent or more.
  • Entering into the spring months, it is important to watch for markets with a possible resurgence, such as Denver, Boulder, Chicago and Corpus Christi TX, where depressed inventories have been accompanied with large year-over-year gains in median list prices. Sustained low inventories in these markets could lead to demand-driven housing price increases that characterized California and most of the sand states in 2013.
  • Strong markets particularly worth noting as those worst hit by climate-driven troubles include Boston with a 10.9 percent month-over-month inventory decline, Chicago with a 6.1 percent inventory drop, Denver with a striking 13.5 percent inventory decline, Detroit with a 6.8 percent reduction, New York with a 9.5 percent decline, and Philadelphia with an 8.2 percent decline.  These markets may experience notable inventory recovery after prohibitive weather conditions subside.

Realtor.com® regularly tracks real estate data and develops monthly reports featuring the number of listings, median age of inventory and median list price across the U.S. and in specific markets, as well as provides year-over-year and month-over-month changes. These reports are the only ones pulled directly from the realtor.com® database, where 90 percent of listings are updated every 15 minutes from more than 800 MLSs. We regularly review and update historical data in order to provide the most accurate and comprehensive market information available. For more information on Move, please visit www.move.com or one of its many online real estate properties including realtor.com®.

Supporting Resources

ABOUT realtor.com®

Operated by Move, Inc., (NASDAQ: MOVE), realtor.com® helps connect people with the content, tools and expertise they need to find their perfect home. As the official website of the National Association of REALTORS®, realtor.com® empowers consumers to make the smartest decisions when it comes to finding a home by leveraging direct connections with more than 800 MLSs to deliver the most accurate and up-to-date listing information in neighborhoods across the country, and by making timely and meaningful connections between consumers and REALTORS®. Whether through desktop, mobile, or tablet versions, realtor.com® is where home happens.

ABOUT MOVE, INC.

Move, Inc. (NASDAQ:MOVE), the leader in online real estate, operates:  realtor.com®, the official website of the National Association of REALTORS®; Move.com, a leading destination for new homes and rental listings, moving, home and garden, and home finance; ListHub™, the leading syndicator of real estate listings; Moving.com™; SeniorHousingNet; SocialBios; Doorsteps®; TigerLead® Top Producer® Systems and FiveStreet.  Move, Inc. is based in San Jose, California.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release may contain forward-looking statements, including information about management's view of Move's future expectations, plans and prospects, within the safe harbor provisions under The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, which may cause the results of Move, its subsidiaries, divisions and concepts to be materially different from those expressed or implied in such statements. These risk factors and others are included from time to time in documents Move files with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including but not limited to, its Form 10-Ks, Form 10-Qs and Form 8-Ks. Other unknown or unpredictable factors also could have material adverse effects on Move's future results. The forward-looking statements included in this press release are made only as of the date hereof. Move cannot guarantee future results, levels of activity, performance or achievements. Accordingly, you should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. Finally, Move expressly disclaims any intent or obligation to update any forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.

SOURCE realtor.com

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