Good luck house hunting in Maine. Inventory is way down

Last June, there were 20 percent more homes on the market in Maine. Same goes for the June before that.

Active home listings have dropped steadily since December 2014, but homes have gotten scooped up at an accelerating rate since the start of 2016, according to statistics from the National Association of Realtors.

The Maine Realtors Association has noted the decline in inventory as a hurdle for sales in recent months and Bangor Savings Bank President and CEO Bob Montgomery-Rice said in an interview this week that prospective home buyers are finding a lot at the top and bottom of the market, but not enough in the middle.

At one point this spring, Montgomery-Rice said the bank had six borrowers pre-approved for every borrower that closed on a home.

The national figures show inventory way down in Bangor and in other municipalities across the state. The figures below are 12-month moving averages, which smooths out seasonal fluctuations such as the surge of homes on the market in the summer.

Bangor had the third-highest number of active listings, but the average there was still far lower than in mid-2015.

The figures from the national association also show the pressure on home inventory in the state.

That’s most acutely felt in the Portland area, where home buyers also have to act fast. At the beginning of June, homes in South Portland were on the market for an average of just 17 days. Homes in parts of Portland were listed for just around 20 days before getting scooped up.

Statewide, homes were on the market for less than 90 days, on average, in 119 communities in June.

Darren Fishell

About Darren Fishell

Darren is a Portland-based reporter for the Bangor Daily News writing about the Maine economy and business. He's interested in putting economic data in context and finding the stories behind the numbers.