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DENVER (KDVR) — There are fewer homes for sale in the Denver metro area than ever.

National reports have recognized that Colorado is near the top of the list of most expensive areas. Middle-class home buyers have fewer options in the Denver area than anywhere in the country except a handful of California cities.

The trend is continuing into this year against a larger backdrop of record inflation. The nation’s cost of living issues are exaggerated in Colorado, where inflation and cost of housing are both outpacing wage gains at a quicker clip than the U.S.

Colorado’s inventory of homes continues to plunge, according to a recent report from the Denver Metro Association of Realtors. There were only 1,438 single-family homes available in the entire state in January 2022. This is the second month in a row that Colorado’s single-family housing inventory has set a record low. In December 2021, the state had 2,183 homes in its sales inventory.

Currently, the Denver metro has about one-third of the listings that there were last year. Metro-wide, there were 742 single-family homes for sale in the ten counties surrounding Denver in January 2022, down from 2,023 in January 2021.

The biggest counties in the Denver metro – Adams, Arapahoe, Denver, Douglas and Jefferson counties – have as little as one-fourth the inventory they had in January 2021. The City and County of Denver has 129 single-family homes in inventory now. Adams, Arapahoe and Jefferson counties each have just more than 100 homes for sale, and Douglas County has fewer than 200.

At the same time, home prices continue to swell. The average sales price for a single-family home in Colorado was $674,342 this January, up 13% from January 2021. The Denver Metro Association of Realtors housing affordability index is now at an all-time low.

Colorado’s housing issues are nearly universal, with only a handful of rural counties such as Crowley, Yuma and Otero not having seen median sales prices increase in the last year.