According to a new housing report by Redfin, median U.S. home sales prices increased 14% from 2019 to $319,978 in August 2020 -- the highest on record. The 14% year-over-year increase was the largest since August 2013.
"The recent boost in the number of people listing their homes for sale still falls far short of demand from folks looking to buy homes right now," said Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather. "Unfortunately, that means little relief for homebuyers, especially those seeking an affordable home. I don't expect the double-digit home-price increases to subside before early 2021."
Even though we're in a historic seller's market, it remains critical that sellers price their homes right, according to Washington, D.C. Redfin listing agent Mary Bazargan.
"Some sellers think that because inventory is low and houses are selling quickly, they can afford to overprice their home," explained Bazargan. "When we price a new listing conservatively, we're getting multiple offers and those homes are often selling above list price, but if we push the price aggressively high, the home tends to sit on the market for a while and won't get multiple offers."
Additional key U.S. housing market takeaways include:
Since the four-week period ending July 5, home prices have increased 6.6%. Over that same period in 2018 and 2019, prices declined an average of 3.7%.
Pending home sales climbed 29% year over year.
New listings of homes for sale were up 6% from a year ago.
Active listings (the number of homes listed for sale at any point during the period) fell 28% from 2019 to a new all-time low. The rate of year-over-year supply declines has remained consistent at this level for the past couple of months.
45.7% of homes that went under contract had an accepted offer within the first two weeks on the market. This has also held relatively steady for the last 16 weeks.
The average sale-to-list price ratio, which measures how close homes are selling to their asking prices, rose to 99.4%--an all-time high and 1.2 percentage points higher than a year earlier.
For the week ending September 20, the seasonally adjusted Redfin Homebuyer Demand Index was up 28.4% from pre-pandemic levels in January and February.