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Housing Market Heats Back Up After A Brief Reprieve In October

Katie Jensen
Nov 23, 2021

Overall, the housing market experienced it’s typical seasonal cooling in October, but relief from homebuyers may be short-lived as pending home sales rose 3% from September.

KEY TAKEAWAYS
  • The median price of homes sold in October was up 13% from last year, reaching $378,700.
  • October marked the 15th consecutive month of double-digit price gains as closed home sales and new home listings dropped 8% and 11%, respectively.
  • Median sale prices increased from last year in all but one of the 85 metros Redfin tracks, Bridgeport, CT (Fairfield County), where prices were down 4.2%.
  • The typical home that sold in October 2021 went under contract in 21 days, which is more than a week faster than last year.

The median price of homes sold in October was up 13% from last year, reaching $378,700, according to a new report from Redfin. 

October marked the 15th consecutive month of double-digit price gains as closed home sales and new home listings dropped 8% and 11%, respectively. Overall, the housing market experienced it’s typical seasonal cooling in October, but relief for homebuyers may be short-lived as pending home sales rose 3% from September and early signs of demand are emerging within the first few weeks of November. 

"The severe lack of inventory is restricting home sales," said Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather. "Even though plenty of people bought homes last year, many homebuyers waited while the pandemic went from bad to worse and remote-work policies were finalized. The homebuyers who are just beginning their search are finding that the well has run dry. But I am hopeful that as it becomes easier to get building materials, we will finally have a strong year for new construction in 2022. That's what the market needs more than anything."

Median sale prices increased from last year in all but one of the 85 metros Redfin tracks, Bridgeport, CT (Fairfield County), where prices were down 4.2%. A year ago Bridgeport had peaked at 40% when a wave of new homebuyers flooded in from New York City. The price declines over the last few months have likely been the cooling effects from a particularly overheated season. The largest price increased in October 2021 were Phoenix, AZ (+25%), Austin, TX (+25%) and McAllen, TX (+24%).

Seasonally adjusted home sales were down 8% from last year, representing the largest decline in 16 months. Home sales also fell in 76 of the 85 largest metro areas Redfin tracks. The biggest declines were found in Bridgeport, CT (-26%), New Brunswick, NJ (-22%) and Salt Lake City (-21%). The largest increases in home sales were in places where sales depressed in 2020, including Honolulu (+18%), New York (+11%), and San Jose, CA (+7%).

The typical home that sold in October 2021 went under contract in 21 days, which is more than a week faster than last year. Still, this is up three days from a record low of 15 days in June. In October, 46% of homes sold above list price, down 11% from a record high in June and up 11% from a year earlier. 
 

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