Redfin looks across all its markets, comparing sales pace, volume, price, etc.

For Redfin chief economist Nela Richardson, it's just the facts. Prices are spiraling, mostly because for-sale inventory is but a trickle. The Redfin Housing Market Tracker, which Richardson looks at, shows a market constrained by existing homeowners stuck or content with their current residences.

The Richardson scan of prices, sales volumes, competition and speed, and new listings, each showing the lopsided effect of scarce flow of supply into the system. Richardson writes of a glimmer of hope on that front:

Across Redfin markets, new for-sale listings rose 8.4 percent, the largest year-over-year increase since April, providing some hope for a pickup in inventory over the next few months. Months of supply increased for the fourth month to 4.2, up from a low of 2.8 in June. The national housing market is still about two months shy of a balanced market between buyers and sellers.

The typical home sat on the market 38 days, seven fewer than the same time last year.

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