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Existing inventory still vastly outnumbering first-time homebuyers

More first-time buyers need to purchase homes to reduce the inventory.

More first-time buyers need to purchase homes to reduce the inventory.

A recent Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance survey revealed a decline in first-time homebuyers, which is increasing the current real estate market's inventory.

The company's HousingPulse Tracking survey discovered that 35.7 percent of current homebuyers are looking for the first time, which is down from 43.4 percent last April. This decline can be attributed to the first-time homebuyers tax credit the government issued last year.

However, as the number of first-time buyers declines, a gap is being created as more existing available homes sit on the market.

"The normal proportion of first-time homebuyers is about one-third of the market and that’s where we are now," said Thomas Popik, research director for Campbell Surveys. "Unfortunately, that’s not enough demand to absorb the excess supply from homeowners defaulting on their mortgages."

First-time buyers are the key to reduce the existing inventory, as those seeking relocation that currently own a property would not lessen the figure, but rather, leave another existing property behind when they move.

The rising number of distressed properties is also contributing to the gap. During April, there were 12 percent more distressed properties available than first-time homebuyers, which is up from 3.5 percent last year.