Despite low inventory and intense competition, buyers are looking forward to spring and the market is already incredibly active as a result.
Nationwide inventory is down 8.5 percent year-over-year and 35 percent of buyers are anticipating a lot of competition this spring, but that isn’t slowing them down. 60 percent of buyers believe they will close in the next six months, and another 34 percent believe they will close in four to six months.
First time buyers are quickly learning what holdover buyers have known for some time: competition is fierce in this market. “We’re only a few weeks into March and already seeing the market heat up,” says realtor.com chief economist Danielle Hale. “Holdover buyers hoping for greener pastures this spring are likely to find sparse options that require them to pay top-dollar or make other concessions.”
As a result of a highly competitive market, buyers are becoming more calculated and learning from past mistakes in hopes of buying a new home. Strategic buyers know that utilizing listing portals and receiving notifications about prices will give them a leg up on other less seasoned buyers. They also understand that above-asking offers and a down payment higher than 20 percent are two ways to win a multiple offer situation. “The majority of buyers are aware of the tough competition they’re up against this spring,” Hale says. “Having been in the market awhile, they’ve likely lost a few homes to better offers, which has given them more time to save and up their bidding strategies.”