Northern New Jersey Residential Inventory Update

Single Family Homes, Condo, Coop
(Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Passaic, Somerset, Sussex, Union, Warren Counties)

4/19 – 15,126
4/26 – 15,648 (3.5% Weekly Increase)

Single Family Homes, Condo, Coop
(Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Passaic Counties)

4/19 – 7,429
4/26 – 7,622 (2.6% Weekly Increase)

Single Family Homes, Condo, Coop
(Hudson County)

4/19 – 2,263
4/26 – 2,259 (0.2% Weekly Decrease)

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48 Responses to Northern New Jersey Residential Inventory Update

  1. Anonymous says:

    As a realtor, I must say that condos are NOT doing too well in the Bergen County area. For the first time, listing agents are actually returning calls. Realtors who practice full-time are beginning to get edgy. Just last weekend I was showing a home to clients and another realtor was very rude and short to me. Apparently, he did not want my clients in the house at the same time he was. His clients looked embarassed to be in his company. My clients made a few remarks about his professionalism as well. I must say, the heat is on!

  2. Richard says:

    i don’t see the big deal with two clients in the same house. while there’s a whiff of competition neither owns the home and are just looking. as long as you aren’t too close together (review separate floors) and conversations aren’t within earshot everyone should act like a human being and be courteous.

  3. Richard says:

    inventory continues to build. question for those in the know. i’ve traditionally heard peak season is apr-jun. does that mean peak listings as well? i ask because i’m not versed on when the bulk of the listings hit the market. is it apr, may? will new listings start to slow down now? thanks in advance.

  4. Anonymous says:

    People appear to not want to budge on reducing their ridiculous asking prices right now in the Hudson Country area in terms of condos. At least that’s why my wife and I have been witnessing. We made 3 verbal offers, all refused because the greedy realtors are holding out. Their loss I suppose as we decided to wait out the season until next year. Renting is still cheaper. Gotta love working in NYC and living in Jersey. I can’t wait until this bubble bursts out the seems. OH, and Jersey City taxes are going up and Union City are now being revised.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Yup. Nothing like being priced out of the area.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Holy Smokes!!!!!!!!!

    4/25/2006 27,418

    4/26/2006 Welcome to the new home of Garden State MLS’ public search engine. Currently, there are 27,623 properties advertised for sale in NJ on our site.

    Inventory is SOARING!

  7. Anonymous says:

    Just 1 day.


  8. Anonymous says:

    Can anyone get the highest number of listings on GSML ever and when it occurred?

    would be interested to know.

  9. chaoticchild says:

    This post has been removed by the author.

  10. chaoticchild says:

    I hope this is a typo.

    3bed 3.5 bath Townhouse in Summit for 1.8 million. Similar townhouse was listed earlier for 1.1 or 1.2 (can’t remember).

    This is the agency who listed a 1 bed condo last month at 485k, then reduced it to 415k within a week.


  11. Richie says:

    3% is a pretty big weekly increase. Especially since we’re talking higher numbers (ie: 3% of 10,000 is 300, while 3% of 15,000 is 450).

    Seems like the pace is accelerating.

  12. Anonymous says:

    “People appear to not want to budge on reducing their ridiculous asking prices right now…”
    We have been in the same sitution -sellers acting as if we are morons and think we will pay $200k more than the house is worth.
    Either they have know idea that the market is changing, or are in denial and hoping some idiot will pay.
    Before we purchase we are going to make sure the market is stable, and I’ll be sure to run it through this blog for reader feedback!

  13. Anonymous says:

    The market is not collapsing. There are other examples as well.
    I saw a townhouse in West Orange last Sunday (open house). It had been listed for about 13 days or so, and in that time the price was increased by 10K (to like 559K). There were many people coming in to look at it, it was quite nice, and the realtor didn’t even bother to give me a tour. He said he had several offers already coming in.

    For those of you whiners waiting for the Great Real Estate Crash of 2007 before you buy, it may never happen. Prices will likely just stabilize. And for those complaining that that simply can’t be, because rental rates versus monthly homeownership expenses are so out of whack…well, take a look at this:


  14. Anonymous says:

    “This is the agency who listed a 1 bed condo last month at 485k, then reduced it to 415k within a week.”

    I don’t blame them for overpricing initially…sometimes in the so-called “hot” towns a greater fool will step in immediately and meet or beat any asking price, no matter how irrational, just to get first dibs and get the property off the market. I’ve seen this happening recently in Summit.

  15. grim says:

    Thanks for the link to that article.. Some very interesting numbers if you look deep enough into them..

    Like the following:

    US Overall Rent Increase (YOY March): 3.9%

    Northern NJ Overall Rent Increase (YOY March): 2.5%

    The Northern NJ market seems to be reacting less to rental increases than most other areas. Why? Perhaps a function of rental vacancies.. While the number is low in comparison to other areas, there has been a marked uptrend over the last few years.

    1999 – 3.9%
    2000 – 4.3%
    2001 – 4.3%
    2002 – 4.8%
    2003 – 6.3%
    2004 – 6.2%
    2005 – 6.2%

    I’m not sure I agree with the premise of the article. They are theorizing that rents will increase because house prices have appreciated. Sorry, but house prices aren’t a function of rentals in NJ, they are a function of jobs, wages, and rental supply.

    I wish you peace as well, my friend.

    Caveat Emptor!

  16. skep-tic says:

    I left NY in 2003 to go back to school, moved back in 2006. rent is basically the same. btw, rent dropped between 2000 (when I first moved to NY) and 2003.

    meanwhile, purchase price of houses went up over 100%.

    didn’t have any trouble finding a rental this time around. in fact, many landlords were asking me if I’d like to sign a 2 yr lease.

    I don’t see much chance of my rent increasing 100% any time soon.

  17. RentinginNJ says:

    Might as well shut the blog down. Looks like we were wrong about the bubble. How can we possibly compete with anecdotal evidence about one condo in West Orange having a few offers after 13 days on the market?

    As for rents going up, it’s about time (your link). It’s been a few years of stagnant to negative growth in rents and now rents might go up by 5% or 6? Even if it’s true, this will barley outpace inflation in 2006.

    Besides, I’m not convinced of the article’s logic. Yes, I agree that the pool of renters may be growing in 2006 due to lack of affordability (or people just deciding not to buy into the hysteria). However, lots of housing units were added in the past few years; many as investment properties. So, what happens with these places? They either get dumped on the market, driving home sale prices down or, they get rented out driving rents down.

    Lets assume the article is correct; more renters drive up rents because purchase prices are too high, sellers won’t budge and people aren’t buying. Okay, this could conceivable happen, but it will be a short-term anomaly. Did you read the article? It’s premised on people not buying houses. What do you think happens when people decide not to buy? Lets see. Lots of investors with carrying costs for second homes, people with exotic mortgages that can’t afford the real cost when teaser rates expire and record inventory on the market…and no buyers. If you guessed prices go down, you’re a winner.

  18. Anonymous says:

    i understand the purpose of this blog, but there doesn’t seem to be any practical knowledge applied to some of the numbers put forth by grim.

    for example, and as way of example only, i would venture to say that ever year for the past __ years, the last week of apri/first week of may has always seen an increase in listings. it is prime time to sell for a 60-90 day closing window (end of the school year).

    i understand grim’s stance on the bubble (whether he is right is still up to debate), but to throw numbers out there w/o at least offering some historical context or some possible practicable explanations seems a bit unfair.

    (let the onslaught begin)…

  19. skep-tic says:

    “for example, and as way of example only, i would venture to say that ever year for the past __ years, the last week of apri/first week of may has always seen an increase in listings. ”

    FYI, Grim posts new inventory numbers every week. most people here seem to be aware that this is prime selling season and that inventory usually goes up this time of year. however, if you compare where we are right now with inventory to a year ago, the difference is striking

  20. grim says:

    Anon @ 5:53,

    What would you like to see.


  21. Anonymous says:

    and if you compared year over year for the past 6 years or so the difference would be approximately the same…why does this year over year mean the bubble is bursting?

    why can’t it just mean things will level off and just not have the crazy increases seen over the past years?

  22. pesche22 says:

    anyone who would pay 559k for a townhouse in is a moron.

    the joint is probaly worth
    100k less maybe if you were stupid
    enough to live their.

  23. Anonymous says:

    im 5:53 pm…

    grim, it is your blog and you are obviously free to post as you please…you obviously have an opinion and show data to support it. my only beef is that that data cannot be looked at solely in the vacuum of “bubble eyes”…sometimes there are practical explanations for data or other plausible ones, rather than just the bubble is bursting…

    that’s my only point.

  24. pesche22 says:

    anyone who does not understand that house prices are overpriced and that housing sales are slowing
    down, must be on another planet

  25. Anonymous says:

    did i say that i don’t understand that housing is overpriced and sales are slowing down? no i didn’t.

    sometimes people who can’t read (or refuse to) live on other planets too.

  26. pesche22 says:

    grim ,

    we have a low level of pain on this site.

  27. Anonymous says:

    also the listings numbers don’t take into account old listings that have actually sold but remain on gsmls or njmls b/c of broker neglect…so one week might show a listing that has been sold already (and shouldn’t be there) and the next week it’s gone b/c the listing expired….just saying…

  28. Anonymous says:

    pesche…glad to see you are open to other ideas or refreshing.

  29. grim says:

    I understand that.

    I’m asking what you, what you want to see. I’ll take the time either find the data, or compile the statistics, simply because you’ve asked for it.

    But I need to know what you want to see. YOY comparison of monthly inventory? Will you believe the numbers I post?

    If not, I could possibly point you to other sources, one being the Otteau Group. Their February report that shows NJ Inventory up 61% over last February, I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that a 61% YOY increase in inventory isn’t seasonality.


  30. pesche22 says:

    grim welcome to pluto

  31. Anonymous says:

    grim not sure where your 61% number comes from…but, for example, otteau reports that 4Q ’05 in (i) essex county there was an increase of 17% in listings, (ii) in bergen it was an increase of 30%, (iii) in morris it was an increase of 6%, and iv) in union an increase o 21%…so nowhere in northern nj that i see was it 61%…just saying

  32. grim says:

    I’ll be away from the blog for the rest of the night.

    Anon @ 5:53, give yourself a name and hang around.


  33. whatbubble says:

    ok grim..thanks…i got a tag name

  34. grim says:

    Anon @ 6:18:

    The February Otteau Report was posted a few weeks back, here is the link:

    Still waiting for the spring market

    Although buying activity in February registered a 15% increase over January’s level, it is currently running well behind last years pace confirming the slowdown in the residential market is continuing into 2006. Year-to-date buying activity is currently running 14% less than last year’s pace while the inventory of unsold homes on the market is 61% higher than a year ago. By combining these indicators the resulting Market Swing of -75% indicates that the 2006 market has lost 75% of its strength as compared to last year at this time.

    Most people will trust Otteau’s stats over mine, and I can accept that.

  35. whatbubble says:

    well unsold inventory is different than listings…i understand things are taking longer to sell (still haven’t receded to “pre-bubble timeframes) but that is to be expected…the key number is listings and those increases aren’t excessive yet

  36. skep-tic says:


    do you have access to info re: listing going back 10+ yrs? i agree that it would be interesting to see how today’s listings numbers stack up to those typical of the pre-bubble period (say before 1998)

  37. Anonymous says:

    whatbubble it aint jersey but it’s still mighty interesting, from calculatedrisk site:

    PS -inventory is the symptom here, what is feeding the bubble is much more complex.

    try picking up the may issue of harper’s – a nice chart story about housing’s inevitable collapse

  38. Anonymous says:

    in case that prior link broke:

  39. skep-tic says:

    found some biannual for-sale inventory numbers going back to 1970 on the HUD site

    (warning: PDF– see p 25 out of 30)

    just taking a few numbers out of this.

    in 1997, the number of houses for sale was 1,043 (in thousands).

    in 1999, it was 971.

    in 2001, it was 1,243

    in 2003, 1,284

    and at the end of 4th quarter 2005, the number for sale was 1,566


    these are nat’l numbers, and we can’t assume they apply locally, but it looks like there may have been a drop off in for-sale inventory right before this bubble got going in the late 90s. for sale inventory seems to have been steadily rising since then.

    BTW, homeownership rates reached an all time high in the northeast at the end of 2005 at 65.2% (see p28 of the above report).

  40. Thought someone would post this item, but I guess not.

    Spring Lake – 3 year supply
    Housing Strength
    Shifts to New Markets

    As Real-Estate Boom Slows on the Coasts,
    Texas and Other Overlooked Areas Gain Heat
    April 26, 2006; Page D1


    Metropolitan areas whose housing markets look less healthy, at least in the short term, include Boston, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia and San Francisco. All of them have growing inventories of homes and relatively weak job growth. As a result, houses that a year or two ago might have sold in hours now are languishing on the market for months, and some sellers are cutting prices.

    To produce a snapshot of residential real-estate prospects for 18 major metro areas, The Wall Street Journal examined inventories of homes for sale at the end of the first quarter from a variety of local sources; pricing trends based on surveys of real-estate agents by Daniel Oppenheim, an analyst at Banc of America Securities in New York; and projections of job creation by Moody’s, a research firm in West Chester, Pa. Inventory data provide a broad picture of the overall supply of housing, while job trends are the biggest driver of demand. The pricing data show how markets are adjusting to recent shifts in supply and demand.


    In New Jersey, a market highly dependent on people who commute to other states, prices are likely to be flat to slightly higher this year, down from the double-digit pace of recent years, says Jeffrey G. Otteau, president of Otteau Appraisal Group in East Brunswick, N.J. Next year, he thinks prices could fall 5% or so in the state.

    “We think that we’re going to be in a flat holding pattern for the next several years,” Mr. Otteau says, though at the top end of the market, there is “an extreme oversupply” of houses. In Spring Lake, N.J., known for expensive homes, there is a three-year supply of homes at the current rate of sales, and Upper Saddle River has a 21-month supply, Mr. Otteau estimates. He blames the state’s loss of high-paying jobs in such industries as telecommunications and pharmaceuticals.

  41. Richard says:

    inventory is increasing and there isn’t enough buyers to balance what’s coming out. this is plain to anyone tracking the market. it’s not that places are just taking a little longer to sell, they are sitting. i can look at specific towns and show the empirical evidence of such. the fact is sellers haven’t reduced prices to a level that will sop up the supply. frankly i’m not sure what that level is. my opinion is at some point sellers will have to reduce asking prices to try and alleviate supply versus demand. if you’re looking at specific towns like summit it’s the wrong place to look. top towns (for reasons such) will always be more impervious to market shifts but inevitably it catches up like spreading a cold. you can’t have supply outpacing demand for long without downward pricing pressures building. no way, no how. if things continue like we’re seeing prices will come down, the question is how much and for how long.

  42. grim says:


    Active Listings – GSMLS
    (Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Passaic Somerset, Sussex, Union, Warren)

    March 2006 – 19,207 (37% Increase)
    March 2005 – 13,989

    Caveat Emptor!

  43. Anonymous says:

    Housing Bust!

    Inventory Piling Up!

    FSBO signs all over

    Pa pa pa pa pa pa pa PANIC!

    Ba ba ba ba ba ba ba BOYCOTT Houses!



  44. Anonymous says:

    sure the demand for rental units is going to increase… those people that go into foreclosure gotta live somewhere

  45. pesche22 says:

    man oh man,,, their sure are alot
    of fsbo signs popping up.

    pricing is the key,, you cant be too
    greedy and you have to have staying

    this may not be a good time to get into the real estate business.

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