Traditionally, April is a dependable month when home sellers can expect a lively market—and if first reports from across the nation are any indication, the evidence points to a spring selling season that fits the pattern. Just before mid-month, a review by Realtor.com’s Economic Research Director prompted the headline, “Good News for Home Sellers.” Key points:
- In multiple regions, buyer demand has been “reignited” due to an increase in buyer affordability in markets where mortgage rates have lowered.
- The pace of home sales relative to inventory has quickened. This is the first time since March 2018.
- Supply data (the number of residences for sale in the Realtor.com database), while still somewhat constricted, rose 8% year-over-year.
In the 50 largest markets the overall rate of absorption reaccelerated after 11 months of declines. That turnaround suggests that the busy spring home buying season “could be more active than anticipated”—indicating the likelihood that this year will turn into more of a seller’s market than most prognosticators had been expecting.
Sellers might be puzzled by the apparent contradiction between a “seller’s market” and reignited demand from buyers. One explanation could be deduced from a survey of 1,015 respondents who plan to buy a home within the next 12 months. Conducted by Toluna Research and published last week, a high proportion of this spring’s home shoppers:
- Nearly 60% are considering a home that needs at least some renovating.
- Just over half are willing to spend more than $20,000 in renovations.
- Of those considering renovations, 95% believe their efforts will result in a positive return on investment.
The willingness to invest time and energy in post-purchase improvement projects is thought to have been encouraged by renovation television programs. The positive before-and-after episodes are more persuasive for experienced homeowners and younger buyers—while fewer than a third of respondents older than 55 years old are as enthusiastic.
It’s not too late for home sellers to take advantage of this year’s market. For an up-to-the-minute market update, give me a call!