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Homes Continue To Fly Off The Market At Rapid Pace

Navi Persaud
May 17, 2021
Man standing next to a house that's sold.

The median home sale price increased 22% year-over-year to $350,750—an all-time high—according to a report from Redfin. In addition, the typical home sold in a record of just 18 days on the market.

This time last year, pandemic stay-at-home orders halted home buying and selling, which makes year-over-year comparisons unreliable for select housing metrics. To provide a more accurate comparison, Redfin broke this analysis into two sections: metrics that are acceptable to compare to the same period in 2020, and metrics for which it makes more sense to compare to the same period in 2019.

Home prices hit a record high of $350,750 and were up 22% year-over-year, also a record, compared to 2020. Additionally, asking prices dipped slightly to $358,527. A record low of just 18 days on market for homes that sold during the period, down 17 days from the same period in 2020.

Redfin reported a record high of 49% of homes sold for more than their list price, up 21 percentage points from the same period a year earlier. The company also reported a record-high 101.5% average sale-to-list price ratio, which measures how close homes are selling to their asking prices, up 2.9 percentage points year-over-year. This means that the average home sold for 1.5% more than its asking price.

"The housing market has gone from one extreme—the onset of the pandemic—to another—the rush to buy primary and second homes while mortgage rates remain near historic lows," said Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather. "Later this year the dust will settle to reveal the new normal for both the economy and the housing market. Many people are getting new clarity on what their personal new normal will be like, and oftentimes that new reality will involve a new home to match their new lifestyle. So I expect home sales to continue to grow for the foreseeable future, even as home price growth slows a bit. This home sale boom is nowhere close to over."

Compared to 2019, pending home sales were up 25% for the four-week period ending May 9. Additionally, new listings of homes for sale were down 9% from the same period in 2019. Compared to the four-week period ending April 11, new listings were up 4%, slightly larger than the 2% increase during the same period in 2019. Although new listings are still in short supply, they are following a typical seasonal pattern and showing slightly more growth than in 2019.

Click here to read more from the report.

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