Low Inventory Makes it Hard to Find a Starter Home

If you know someone who's trying to buy a home for the first time, you're probably aware of the struggles they’re facing.

It’s a tough time for first-time home buyers. Houses are pricier, smaller and in need of more post-sale care than they once did.

That's the finding of a national survey by the real estate website Trulia and reported by Bloomberg,

The study also found that low inventory and rising mortgage rates also complicate matters.

In Greater Houston, it's the shortage of listings that's now a challenge.

The region has seen a shrinkage of inventory since Harvey in the starter home market.

Broker associate Paul Silverman of Martha Turner Sotheby’s tells Newsradio 740 KTRH that one couple he represents even made an offer that was $11,000 dollars over the asking price -- just to get the starter home they wanted.

Silverman also offers strategy to would-be starter-home hunters.

He says first-time buyers should not start by scanning listings, but instead deciding just how much they really can pay. He says to be realistic, and only then proceed to pre-qualifying for a loan and searching the listings.

Trulia has been tracking prices and inventory since 2012.

Nationally, starter homes prices have jumped 9.9 in the past year alone -- starter-home supply is now at a six-year low, Trulia finds.

Also, “fixer-uppers” account  for 11 percent of the starter-home category, the study found.

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