The analysis tracks changes in the number of homes listed for sale on Zillow across the country as of Sept. 30, 2012 and compares inventory changes in the bottom, middle and upper tiers of home prices.
Nationally, inventory rates have dropped by one-fifth (-19.4 percent) across all homes with inventory declining the most in higher-priced homes (-22 percent).
According to the Zillow press release:
In the largest 30 metro areas, inventory across all tiers has fallen the most in the Sacramento (-42.4 percent), San Francisco, (-42.4 percent) and San Diego (-40.7 percent) metros; and has fallen the least in the Cincinnati (-9.5 percent), Portland, Ore. (-10.8 percent) and St. Louis, Mo. (-14.5 percent) areas.
Nationally, the inventory dropped 19.4 percent year over year while the inventory dropped 15.3 percent at the bottom tier of prices. The middle and upper tier inventories dropped 18.6 percent and 22 percent, respectively.
This report suggests that the demand for existing homes is higher than is the case in the nation overall. Given that gains in home prices have outpaced the nation in recent months, this is not a surprise.