June 22, 2020 – Spring’s pandemic-induced downturn in home buyer traffic seems like a distant memory following May’s impressive nationwide 21.4 percent year-over-year increase in showing activity, according to data from the ShowingTime Showing Index.
For the first time since February, U.S. showing activity was up year over year on the heels of increasing agent adoption of virtual showing technology to present listings. The loosening of local restrictions on showings taking place throughout the country has also played a role in renewed buyer interest. Together, those two factors have contributed to impressive boosts in year over year showing activity in all four regions tracked by ShowingTime.
The South Region led the country’s improving buyer activity in May, with a 23.2 percent year-over-year increase, the region’s biggest jump in more than a year. The Midwest saw the second greatest increase, with a 20.1 percent spike, while the West and Northeast followed close behind with 19.6 percent year-over-year growth in both regions.
“The turnaround so far resulted in market imbalance with demand outstripping supply and pushing the prices up in many regions of the country.” said ShowingTime Chief Analytics Officer Daniil Cherkasskiy. “While showing traffic typically subsides mildly after Easter when it reaches a plateau for the summer months, this year looks drastically different as the busiest time is hitting us in early June. The increased buyer demand might be creating a feedback loop, inspiring sellers who would have previously given up on selling this time of year to instead put their home back on the market and make another attempt.”
This month, ShowingTime followed up on the company’s earlier introduction of a “virtual showing” option with the release of ShowingTime LIVE Video, an all-in-one showing and video platform that enables agents and their buyers to use ShowingTime’s mobile app for live, one-on-one interactive video showings. It has become one of the go-to options for thousands of agents in select markets, and will be available in most markets throughout the U.S. and Canada by the end of the June.
“Since it first became clear that COVID-19 would have an impact on real estate, we’ve been dedicating as many resources as possible to help agents operate effectively,” said ShowingTime President Michael Lane. “Stay-at-home orders are forcing agents to seek out creative ways to show homes to buyers. We developed ShowingTime LIVE Video to make their jobs easier.”
The ShowingTime Showing Index, the first of its kind in the residential real estate industry, is compiled using data from property showings scheduled across the country on listings using ShowingTime products and services, providing a benchmark to track buyer demand. ShowingTime facilitates more than five million showings each month. Released monthly, the Showing Index tracks the average number of appointments received on active listings during the month. Local MLS indices are also available for select markets and are distributed to MLS and association leadership.
SEATTLE, June 25, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Homes are selling faster now than any time since spring 2018, a new Zillow® analysis shows, meaning potential buyers should be prepared to strike quickly, and sellers who have been on the fence through the onset of the coronavirus pandemic might now want to list.
Though many sellers have taken a wait-and-see approach through the pandemic, homes that have made it onto the market have been snatched up relatively quickly by eager buyers. In mid-June, the typical home sold in the U.S. had an offer accepted 22 days after it was listed for sale. That’s as fast as homes have sold since early June 2018, when they typically sold in 21 days. Even at the slowest point of the spring — in late May — that number only climbed to 31 days, just six days slower than late May last year.
The same limited-inventory dynamic — with sellers pulling back from the market more than buyers — has kept home prices relatively steady during the pandemic, though signs point to a modest decline in the coming months.
More homes are coming onto the market — new listings are up 14% month over month — showing sellers appear to be gaining confidence in that buyer demand. Many who listed their homes during the past few weeks were rewarded with a quick sale. Inventory remains incredibly tight and sales are happening quickly, so buyers should be prepared to move fast when they find a home they’re interested in.
“Buyers shopping today might expect to be welcomed by desperate sellers, but they’ll instead discover houses selling like hotcakes in the speediest market in recent memory,” said Zillow economist Jeff Tucker. “The market did slow down in April, but anyone shopping this summer needs to be prepared to keep up with the lightning-quick pace of sales today. The question is whether the tempo will slow after buyers finish playing catch-up from planned spring moves, or if this fast-paced market will stay hot thanks to continued low interest rates and buyers scrambling over record-low summer inventory.”
In 29 of the 35 largest U.S. metros, homes are typically seeing offers accepted faster than a year ago. Homes are selling the fastest — in only five days — in Columbus. Cincinnati (six days), Kansas City (six days), Seattle (seven days) and Indianapolis (seven days) are just behind. Pittsburgh has seen the most dramatic acceleration of late, with sellers typically accepting an offer 17 days sooner than at this time last year and 40 days sooner than a month ago.
The slowest market by some margin is New York, where homes are typically spending 70 days on the market before an offer is accepted, more than three weeks longer than at this time last year. Miami (55 days) and Atlanta (38 days) are the next slowest.
New York and Miami have typically been among the slowest-moving for-sale markets, so the recent slowdown may not be fully attributable to the pandemic. Still, the year-over-year slowdown of 23 days in New York is the biggest in the country, and the six-day slowdown in Miami is the third-biggest behind New York and Atlanta.
FAIR HOUSING AND THE CURRENT COVID-19 PANDEMIC
The Connecticut Fair Housing Center has been getting calls from people and social service providers about whether the fair housing laws apply to people who may be infected with Covid-19 (also called the coronavirus) or people who are otherwise affected.
Yes, the fair housing laws can protect people who are infected with Covid-19 and those who are perceived as being infected.
FAIR HOUSING, NATIONAL ORIGIN DISCRIMINATION AND COVID-19. The state and federal fair housing laws prohibit discrimination based on national origin. This means:
• It is illegal to deny you housing or shelter because you are from one of the countries most affected by Covid-19 or are perceived as being from such a country.
• It is illegal to have different rules for you than for everyone else because you are from one of the countries most affected by Covid-19 or are perceived as being from such a country.
• It is illegal for a landlord to send you a Notice to Quit or try to evict you because you are from one of the countries most affected by Covid-19 or are perceived as being from such a country.
FAIR HOUSING, DISABILITY AND COVID-19
State and federal fair housing laws prohibit discrimination based on disability. If you are infected with Covid-19, you are considered disabled under the state and federal fair housing laws and may be protected from discrimination.
• If you do not have Covid-19 but a landlord or housing provider denies you housing or shelter because they believe you have the virus, this is illegal and you should call the Center
• If you do not have Covid-19 but a landlord or housing provider quarantines you or imposes different rules on you because they believe you have the virus, this is illegal and you should call the Center.
If you have been diagnosed with Covid-19 and you have been denied housing or shelter or had different rules imposed on you should contact the Center so we can discuss and explain how the fair housing laws apply to your situation.
CONTACT THE CONNECTICUT FAIR HOUSING CENTER
Telephone: 860-247-4400 Toll Free: 888-247-4401 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
60 Popieluszko Court • Hartford, CT • 06106 860-247-4400 (Hartford) • 888-247-4401 (Toll Free) 860-247-4236 (fax) www.ctfairhousing.org Continue reading