As pandemic fears begin to ease, the demand for homes in the United States has skyrocketed, resulting in higher sale prices and an overall shortage of listings.
Luckily for prospective homebuyers, these circumstances are expected to change, as more sellers take advantage of the lifting economic conditions and put their homes on the market.
In fact, the latest survey from real estate listing website Realtor.com found that 10% of homeowners plan on listing their homes within the next 12 months — a 25% increase from a typical year.
Many homeowners plan to sell within the next two to three years
Recent findings from Redfin showed that in early 2021, for-sale listings were at an all-time low. However, the Realtor.com survey indicates that prospective homebuyers may see a jump in active listings in the near future.
Over 60% of potential sellers said they planned to list their property within the next six months. Of that group, 9% had already put their home on the market, while 10% planned to do so in the next 30 days.
Realtor.com also discovered that 76% of potential sellers have already begun preparing for the process. In particular, the steps they have taken so far include:
- Making repairs
- Cleaning and redecorating
- Contacting real estate agents
- Researching home values in their neighborhoods
This bubble of active listings doesn't seem to die down anytime soon either, as another 16% of homeowners stated that they'd likely list their homes in the next two to three years.
The biggest reason this group gave for waiting — one that was especially prevalent among baby boomers and members of the silent generation, as well as sellers in the West and Midwest — was the lack of homes currently available in their price range.
Over 9 in 10 prospective sellers stated that they would be more likely to sell sooner if the ideal moment presented itself, though.
The Realtor.com survey found that almost 60% of potential sellers planned to list their home below the national median of about $350,000. Additionally, nearly 3 in 10 (28%) would price their home between $500,000 and $750,000 — an ideal range for many who plan on trading up. These findings indicate that even more properties may be available for sale in the months ahead as prospective buyers find homes they can afford.
What post-pandemic buyers want from their new homes
The Realtor.com survey also offered insights into why more homeowners are considering selling their home during this time. Unsurprisingly, their responses revealed that many of these decisions were influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic and the conditions they faced over the past year.
The top reason given by most respondents was the fact that their families had outgrown the space, features and location of their current home. Although many homeowners conducted renovations over the past year to make their space more comfortable to live in, Realtor.com's findings indicate that there are some aspects of a property that home improvements simply can't fix.
The next most common reason — reported by almost 25% of potential sellers — was the opportunity to take advantage of the current seller's market, while the desire for a smaller house came in third.
Potential sellers also wanted to list their current home because they:
- Want to live closer to friends and family
- Want different features and amenities
- Need a more affordable home
- Need access to money
Methodology: Realtor.com and HarrisX conducted a national online survey of 3,998 US adults, weighting the results to align with age, gender, income, race and ethnicity and regional proportions in the population. A separate oversample of 657 potential sellers was also collected and weighted in accordance with the original sample taken.