New data from Redfin shows all-time high for asking prices. But homes are staying on market longer and new listings are on the decline.
Home sellers are shooting for the moon with asking prices nationwide reaching an all-time high - even as house sales have slowed, according to new data from Redfin.com.
The median asking price for American homes in September 2021 reached $361,250 - a 12 percent increase over the same period last year, according to the latest report from Seattle-based Redfin. The numbers suggest strong seller enthusiasm and confidence they can achieve top dollar sales. Still, Redfin also reported that pending sales were up only four percent in September. That's the smallest year-over-year increase since June 2020. More signs of slowing: fewer than half of all homes are selling above list price; and new listings of homes for sale declined 20 percent from their 2021 peak.
"Home sellers continue to show their optimism with increasing asking prices," said Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fairweather, in a press release announcing the findings. "However, there are already signals from the Fed and markets that mortgage rates are starting to creep up. The hit to affordability that comes with higher rates and higher home prices could let some steam out of the market It's never a good idea to overprice your home, but I would be especially wary of overpricing as seasonal cooling trends persist and rising rates take some affordability out of the homebuying equation."
Sellers are asking top dollar at a time when the median home-sale price has increased 13 percent year over year to $356,358. But it appears things are bound to change. According to the Redfin date:
- New listings of homes for sale were down eight percent from the same period in 2020.
- Active listings (the number of homes listed for sale at any point during the period) fell 22 percent from 2020.
- Homes are staying on the market longer. Those that sold were on the market for a median of 20 days, nearly a week longer than the all-time low of 15 days seen in late June and July.
- The Redfin Homebuyer Demand Index fell during the week ending September 26, but was up eight percent from a year earlier. The Index is a measure of requests for home tours and other home-buying services from Redfin agents.