Record low house inventories pose challenges for Michigan home buyers -- Here’s what you need to do

Housing inventories in Michigan are at record lows, meaning that if you’re looking to buy right now, you must be prepared.

Jeanette Schneider, of Remax of Southeastern Michigan, said there are a limited number of houses on the market, making it more difficult to find one to purchase. Schneider said she currently has about a month’s worth of inventory.

According to Schneider, that means "if nothing else changes if nothing else changed in the market -- no other homes came in the market, no more buyers, everything that was out there would sell in 30 days and there would literally be no more homes for anybody to even look at buying. That’s how tight we are right now."

Schneider cites several reasons why there are so few houses available. 

The short answer is the pandemic," she said. "The real answer is you’ve got a lot of Baby Boomers that are current homeowners and either for their own health they are a little leary of people coming and being in their homes, so they’re choosing to just not to put it on the market, or if they are in the upper end of the age spectrum for Boomers, they’re definitely not interested in moving into a nursing home or assisted living right now, so they are choosing to stay put and maybe get some additional help in house."

Schneider also said people who have refinanced are contributing to the inventory issue.

If you are looking to buy a house right now, you must be prepared and act fast. According to Schneider, with the current market, you don’t have much time to decide on putting an offer on a home once you see one you like.

"You have to be so prepared," Schneider said. "Prepared financially so you have your pre-approval. You know exactly what you can afford. You also need to be prepared for exactly what it is you’re looking for because you are not likely in most markets to have the luxury of going home and sleeping on it, thinking about it, talking with a partner or spouse about it. You’re going to have to make a pretty quick decision once you see a house about putting an offer on it."