According to CoreLogic, housing inventory sits at an historical low. Sitting at just 4.5 months, inventory is less than half of what it was 10 years ago when it sat at 9.1 months in March 2009.

Two drivers of inventory, new construction and mobility, are both low plus some “potential” inventory has shifted to rental markets over the last decade. The share of rental inventory has increased from 8.7% on all available sale/rent homes in March 2011 to 14.2% in March 2019.

Though the average share of rental listings across the US in March 2019 was 12.1%, some metros had much higher shares of rental listings.   These metros with higher shares of rental listings included fast-growing cities, expensive cities and cities that were particularly hard hit during the housing/foreclosure crisis. In fact, the rental share of total listings increased 33% since the foreclosure crisis by 2018.

Take a look:

  • Boston – 25% rental listings
  • Miami – 24% rental listings
  • Austin – 23% rental listings
  • Philadelphia – 23% rental listings
  • Honolulu – 22% rental listings
  • Fort Lauderdale – 20% rental listings
  • Houston – 20% rental listings
  • Washington DC – 18% rental listings
  • West Palm Beach – 16% rental listings
  • Dallas – 15% rental listings

Relatively high rental shares don’t necessarily translate into having large housing supplies. Just like the for-sale market, rental markets in many regions have low inventory. A good example is Austin. It has a high share of for-rent listings but only a 1.7-month supply of available rentals.

In terms of BOTH for-sale and for-rent listings, large metros have skimpy supplies. Philadelphia has a 6.5-month supply; San Jose has a 2.8-month supply; San Francisco has a 1.5-month supply; Chicago has a 1.4-month supply and Seattle has a 1.1-month supply, according to CoreLogic.