Dec 12 (Reuters) – After rapid gains, some of the hottest
housing markets in the United States look like they are starting
to roll over.
Whether this is a reaction to the run-up in mortgage
interest rates in recent months or represents a waning bid from
the all-cash financial investors who have so often been marginal
buyers is unclear. Either way, volatility in house prices may
now prove to be a feature of the system rather than a bug.
In Phoenix, where house prices have risen more than 40
percent in less than two years, pending sales fell 32 percent in
October, while the number of months (at current sales rates) of
supply is up 111 percent from May.
In Sacramento, the October figures are equally grim, with
year-on-year supply up 93 percent and sales down 20 percent.
Both Sacramento and Phoenix are markets that have seen a
large influx of financial buyers, private equity firms and
others trying to put together large portfolios of single-family
homes to manage and rent.