Matthew Speakman on what’s driving homebuyer demand

Zillow Economist Speakman explains what Zillow’s recent report on homebuyer demand tell us about the current state of the housing market.

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CoronavirusReal Estate

The real estate market heats up: Housing demand is 25% above pre-pandemic levels

Housing inventory is starting to improve but still not keeping pace with demand

Demand for houses continues to skyrocket, according to a report from Redfin CEO Glenn Kelman. Seasonally adjusted demand for houses during the week of June 1 through June 7 was 25% above pre-pandemic levels.

Kelman said that bidding wars have caused listings to move quickly, and sales prices are up 3.1% year over year. The percentage of newly listed homes to accept an offer within 14 days increased from 42% in May to 47% in June.

“Our abiding concern in May was about the number of homes for sale, but that’s improving too,” Kelman said. “After falling to 21% below last year’s level the week of May 25-31, new listings last week continued their recovery; last week’s new listings were 15% below last year’s level.”

One thing to come out of pandemic purchases is 3D tours and video-chat tours, as states placed restrictions on real estate practices while shelter-in-place order are in effect. According to the report, 15% of home tours are happening via video chat, which is 30 times higher than pre-pandemic.

Views of 3D scans skyrocketed on Redfin’s website, up 42% from April to May. According to the report, 25% of new listings in markets like Seattle and Orange County, California include a scan.

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