These U.S. towns are experiencing a very real housing shortage.

Limited Homes in These Cities
Credit: Getty

This story originally appeared on

Prospective homebuyers know the search is far from easy—heading to busy open houses, placing bids, wading through paperwork, the nerve-wracking inspection process… the list goes on and on. But the purchasing process is easier in some markets, especially those experiencing a boon. In other cities, inventory is very slim and, therefore, more competitive. So you know what to expect, the experts at looked at which cities have the lowest inventory of homes for sale.

The analysts evaluated the 150 biggest markets in the U.S. and the percentage decrease in homes available for sale from 2015 to 2016. Seattle, Washington, which tops the list, is seeing a surge in home values (it was second on Zillow’s predictions for top 10 hottest housing markets in 2017, and number 20 on’s list), but a growing job market means buyers may have a harder time finding the right place—just 0.4 percent homes are for sale and the percentage decrease in for-sale homes in 2016 was 13.4 percent.

Second and third on the list were Eugene, Oregon, and Grand Rapids, Michigan. Of the top 10, five cities were on the West Coast and four in the Midwest. The only East Coast city on the list was Buffalo, New York. Surprisingly, one city known to have an especially challenging housing market didn’t make the top 10: San Francisco. According to experts, the City by the Bay actually had a 4 percent increase in the number of for-sale homes in 2016.

Take a look at the top 10 markets with housing shortages below, and see more at

  1. Seattle, Washington
  2. Eugene, Oregon
  3. Grand Rapids, Michigan
  4. Buffalo, New York
  5. Fort Wayne, Indiana
  6. Sacramento, California
  7. Detroit, Michigan
  8. Portland, Oregon
  9. Santa Rosa, California
  10. Omaha, Nebraska
By Real SimpleSarah Yang and Sarah Yang / Real Simple