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Bargainer’s Market: 92% Of Recent Home Sellers Accepted Buyer-Friendly Terms

Sarah Wolak
Aug 30, 2022
According to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey, mortgage applications have increased 2.8 percent over last week, for the week ending June 9, 2017

Realtor.com survey also found that 41% of home sellers accepted some contingencies in the contract.

KEY TAKEAWAYS
  • Homes that sold at–or above–asking price peaked at 82% in February and March of 2022 when mortgage rates were below 4% and dropped to 69% for homes that sold within the last month when rates hovered near 6%.
  • Among the 449 people surveyed, the number of buyers asking for repairs based on the inspection results more than doubled in recent months.

Homebuyers are regaining a bit of bargaining power, according to a new Realtor.com survey, which reported that buyer-friendly terms and contingencies are more common in 2022 sales contracts.

According to Realtor.com, 92% of all recent home sellers accepted some buyer-friendly terms, which includes accepting contingencies, dropping prices, assisting with buyers’ closing costs, and paying for repairs.

Among the 449 people surveyed, the number of buyers asking for repairs based on the inspection results more than doubled in recent months, and the number of sellers refusing to make repairs dropped to zero, indicating that negotiation is making a comeback in the housing market.

“Our survey shows that the overheated housing market of the past two years, which predominantly favored sellers, is beginning to regain a sense of normalcy, which is welcome news for home buyers,” said George Ratiu, manager of economic research, Realtor.com. “The combination of higher mortgage rates and prices have noticeably cooled demand over the first half of the year.

"In addition," he continued, "as more homeowners have been listing their properties, rising inventory is motivating more of them to resort to price cuts in order to successfully close transactions. At the same time, even as we are seeing a shift toward a more buyer-friendly market, it’s worth noting that the majority of recent sellers are still satisfied with the outcome of their home sale.”

Homes that sold at or above the asking price peaked at 82% in February and March of 2022, when mortgage rates were below 4%. That dropped to 69% for homes that sold within the last month, when rates hovered near 6%. The share of sellers who sold below-asking jumped from 18% in February and March 2022 to 31% within the last month.

Of those who sold within the last month, 95% reported that the buyer requested a home inspection, up from 82% of those who sold six to 12 months ago. More than twice as many buyers of homes that sold in the last month asked for repairs as a result of the home inspection (67%) compared to homes that sold six to 12 months ago (31%).

The number of surveyed sellers who refused to pay for any repairs during that time dropped from 8% to zero. Nearly all respondents (95%) who sold their home in the last month made some updates or repairs to the property before listing, compared to 71% who sold six to 12 months ago. The average amount that recent sellers spent on repairs before listing was $14,163.

Homes are continuing to sell quickly, however: 22% of people who sold within the past month said their home went under contract in less than a week, up from 14% of people who sold six to 12 months ago. Additionally, 92% of people who sold their home in the past month were satisfied with the overall outcome of the sale, down slightly from the 98% who were satisfied six to 12 months ago. And 46% of sellers in the last month were satisfied with the price of their home sale, compared to 72% of those who sold six to 12 months ago.

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