‘Fierce Competition’ Ahead for Home Buyers
July 16, 2020
A shortage of homes for sale and record low interest rates are creating a competitive home shopping summer, realtor.com® notes in its Weekly Recovery Report ending July 11. The housing market is getting closer to pre-pandemic levels. Realtor.com®’s index reached 98.5 this week, which is just 1.5 points below its pre-pandemic baseline.
“Today’s market remains tipped in favor of sellers as would-be spring buyers are shopping well into what would normally be summer vacation season,” says Danielle Hale, realtor.com®’s chief economist. “Home buyers, trying to take advantage of record low mortgage rates and make up for lost time, are finding limited and more expensive options. Although sellers are slowly acclimating to this unexpected surge in buyer interest, inventory is still lagging behind demand, which is driving quick time on market and listing price growth on par with this time last summer.”
The West continues to lead the recovery, now pushing ahead of its pre-pandemic benchmark. The Northeast also is above its previous baseline, too. The South and Midwest continue to lag behind their pre-pandemic baselines and are showing some signs of losing momentum in the recovery, realtor.com® cautions.
Overall, realtor.com®’s recovery index is showing the greatest housing recovery in Seattle, Boston, Denver, Philadelphia, and New York.
However, housing shortages continue. Over the last three weeks combined, new listings are down an average of 14% from a year ago. Also, median listing prices continue to increase at 7.9% over last year, which is faster than the pre-pandemic pace, realtor.com® notes.