Multiple Offers Return as Buyers are Back

Record tight inventories are making it increasingly difficult for growing numbers of buyers, who are creating multiple-bid environments in markets that haven’t seen buyers battle over homes in six years.

The problem is buyers are back but sellers aren’t resulting in buyers fighting over whats available, especially in Western markets recovering from large volumes of foreclosures. Prices are reported to be on the uptrend with 62 percent of REALTORS® reporting constant or increasing prices compared to the same time a year ago.
Buyer demand is reported to be growing faster than supply, and many REALTORS® are reporting multiple offers.
Buyer traffic is still well above the moderate level, but seller traffic is flat, according to the NAR survey. First-time homebuyers accounted for 34 percent of total buyers. Normally first-time buyers are in the neighborhood of 40 percent of total residential sales, according to NAR’s Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers.
Multiple bids are changing the playing field in a number of markets this spring and summer. Many agents new to the business who have little experience with them are dealing with a sudden and unexpected competition for homes brought about by investors.
In the 1990’s multiple offers were the norm and offered sellers a generous selection of offers from which to choose. This trend is now returning with sellers experiencing multiple offers even in this still difficult market and there is evidence that this trend will continue as buyers compete in a market with limited inventory.
In Seattle, multiple offers on beginner houses in Seattle are common again reports Phil Leng of Kirkland, Wash. and in Austin, broker Gwynn Teal Carpenter reports, “It’s happened again! We are in one of those real estate markets where we are seeing homes with multiple offers. In Austin Texas, the market is so sizzling hot that it isn’t unusual to have more than 2 offers on a fantastic priced and conditioned home.”