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Record-Fast Home Sales Reflect Various Market Trends

Considering recent reports revealing just how competitive one must be to purchase a home in most parts of the country it should come as little surprise that Redfin just reported that homes today are selling faster than any time in recorded home-selling history.

Redfin analyst Tim Ellis reports that 59% of listed houses are under contract within two weeks.

While demand is still intense, Redfin's research showed some early indications that an increasing number of potential buyers are throwing in the towel as prices climb to new heights and mortgage rates tick up.

“Some homebuyers have reached their limit on bidding wars and soaring prices,” said Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fairweather. “Add to the mix a dwindling number of homes for sale and rising mortgage rates, and the typical family that is still searching for an affordable house may have missed the boat. First-time homebuyers who were already stretching their budgets will have to make bigger compromises on size and location or resign to renting for another year. However, those who are flexible should look to the condo market where there’s still a bit less competition. Looking ahead, Biden’s infrastructure plan aims to incentivize zoning for multifamily homes, which could increase the supply of affordable homes and provide even more people a path to homeownership, but there is no guarantee the incentives would be enough for local governments to change their zoning practices.”

Redfin's researchers showed year-over-year comparisons. In many instances, atypical stats can be attributed to stay-at-home-orders a year ago that halted both homebuying and selling activity.

A recap:

  • The median home-sale price increased 17% year over year to $335,613, an all-time high.
  • Asking prices of newly listed homes rose 14% year over year to $353,500, an all-time high.
  • Pending home sales were up 38% from the same period in 2020, and up 28% from the same period 2019, which was a more typical year for the housing market. Compared to the previous four-week period, pending sales grew just 0.9%, the smallest growth between two reports since the four-week period ending February 21. Between the same periods in 2019, pending sales rose 6%.
  • New listings of homes for sale were down 2% from the same period in 2020, and down 5% from the same period in 2019.
  • Active listings (the number of homes listed for sale at any point during the period) fell 42% from the same period in 2020 to a new all-time low. This is the largest decrease on record in this data, which goes back through 2016.
  • 47% of homes that went under contract had an accepted offer within one week of hitting the market, an all-time high and up from 33% during the same period a year earlier.
  • 41% of homes sold for more than their list price, an all-time high and 16 percentage points higher than the same period a year earlier.
  • The average sale-to-list price ratio, which measures how close homes are selling to their asking prices, increased to 100.4%, an all-time high and 2 percentage points higher than a year earlier.
  • For the 7-day period ending March 28, the seasonally adjusted Redfin Homebuyer Demand Index—a measure of requests for home tours and other services from Redfin agents—was up 148% from the same period a year ago, when housing demand was near the lowest point it would hit during the pandemic. Compared with the same one week period in 2019, demand is up 57%.
  • Mortgage purchase applications decreased 2% week over week (seasonally adjusted) and were up 39% from a year earlier (unadjusted) during the week ending March 26. For the week ending April 1, 30-year mortgage rates increased slightly to 3.18%, the highest level since June.

About Author: Christina Hughes Babb

Christina Hughes Babb is a reporter for DS News and MReport. A graduate of Southern Methodist University, she has been a reporter, editor, and publisher in the Dallas area for more than 15 years. During her 10 years at Advocate Media and Dallas Magazine, she published thousands of articles covering local politics, real estate, development, crime, the arts, entertainment, and human interest, among other topics. She has won two national Mayborn School of Journalism Ten Spurs awards for nonfiction, and has penned pieces for Texas Monthly, Salon.com, Dallas Observer, Edible, and the Dallas Morning News, among others.
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