The number of homes listed for sale across the country increased 11.8 percent in May, according to new estimates released by Zillow. It was the third consecutive month of improvement. But, despite the fact that inventory was up in nearly 80 percent of the metropolitan areas covered in the report, there are still fewer homes for sale than is considered normal. Inventory is especially tight among houses in the lower end of the market. Largely due to high demand for these homes among real-estate investors over the past few years, the lack of houses in the bottom tier of the market will continue to present challenges for first-time homebuyers looking to purchase an affordable home. But, as more homes become available for sale, price increases should continue to normalize which, along with income growth and improving employment levels, should help future affordability issues. So far this year, price appreciation has been much closer to normal. This trend should continue as more homeowners put their homes up for sale. More here.