Inventories of homes for sale are dropping in areas where they've recently been high like in Oakland, Calif., Phoenix and Miami. Interest rates are approximately 0.75 percent lower than they were a year ago. It seems like a good time to get off the fence and into the action if you can find a house that reasonably matches your wish list and you don't find yourself bucking other buyers who have the same idea. Months' supply of inventory is an estimate of how long it would take to sell all of the homes in a given market at the current sales pace. A six-month supply of unsold inventory is thought to represent a balanced market. In California, there was a 4.2-month supply of inventory in April 2012, down from 5.6 months a year ago. When buyer demand increases, the unsold inventory drops, and multiple offers often enter the picture -- sometimes in a big way. In the hills above Berkeley, Calif., buyers are chasing too few homes for sale. But not all homes are coveted. The best ho...
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