Affordable metro areas also saw significant home price gains in November. For the fifth month in a row, the nine metro areas with the greatest gains had median sale prices below the national median, led by Camden, N.J. (median price $200,000, up 14.3 percent), Detroit ($140,000, up 12 percent) and Bakersfield, Calif. ($249,999, up 11.6 percent). For the first time in five months, the metro area with the 10th largest price gain in the nation had a median price above the national median: Salt Lake City ($345,000, up 9.5 percent). San Jose was the only market out of the 85 tracked by Redfin to record a year-over-year median sale price decline, with a 1.1 percent slippage.
Nationwide, home sales in November were up three percent from the previous year, although they were also down by one percent from October. November marked the fourth consecutive month of annual sales increases, with the biggest increases occurring in McAllen, Texas (14.7 percent); Anaheim (10.2 percent) and Virginia Beach (9.2 percent).
But while prices and sales were up, inventory shrank. The supply of homes for sale in November fell 12.1 percent from the previous year, the biggest decline since April 2013 and the fifth straight month of evaporating inventory.
"Given that inventory is falling quickly, we'd expect to see even stronger price growth, especially when compared to last year's soft market," said Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fairweather. "The fact that homes are selling faster indicates that there are buyers ready to pull the trigger and take advantage of low interest rates. If lack of inventory and high demand continues, buyers who take a wait-and-see approach could face less favorable conditions in the spring season like bidding wars and faster price growth."