A Record Share of Home Sellers Are Giving Concessions to Buyers

A Record Share of Home Sellers Are Giving Concessions to Buyers

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Buyers received concessions—such as money for repairs and mortgage-rate buydowns—in a record 42% of home sales in the fourth quarter, up from 31% a year earlier. Pandemic boomtowns including Phoenix and Las Vegas saw among the biggest increases in concessions.

Home sellers gave concessions to buyers in 41.9% of home sales in the fourth quarter—the highest share of any three-month period in Redfin’s records, which date back to July 2020. That’s up from just over 30% in both the previous quarter and the fourth quarter of 2021, and outpaces the prior 40.8% high from the three months ending July 2020, when the housing market nearly ground to a halt due to the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

This is according to data submitted by Redfin buyers’ agents across the U.S. A concession is recorded when an agent reports a seller provided something that helped reduce the buyers’ total cost of purchasing the home. That could include money toward repairs, closing costs and/or mortgage-rate buy-downs. It does not include situations in which sellers lowered the listing price of their home.

Concessions have made a comeback as rising mortgage rates, inflation and economic uncertainty have dampened homebuying demand, giving the buyers who remain in the market increased negotiating power. 

That’s a stark shift from the pandemic homebuying frenzy of late 2020 and 2021, when record-low mortgage rates fueled fierce competition, forcing most buyers to bid over the asking price and waive every contingency just to have their offers taken seriously.

“Buyers are asking sellers for things that were unheard of during the past few years,” said Van Welborn, a Redfin real estate agent in Phoenix. “They’re feeling empowered, partly because their offer is often the only one, and partly because they know sellers have built up so much equity during the pandemic that they can afford to dole out sizable concessions.”

Welborn continued: “I recently helped one of my buyers negotiate a $10,000 credit for a new roof and a handful of other repairs. We originally asked for $15,000, but were happy with $10,000 because the homeowner also agreed to sell for less than their asking price.”

Homeowners are increasingly selling for below their desired price as the housing market slows. A record 22% of home sales recorded by Redfin buyers’ agents in the fourth quarter included both a concession and a final sale price below the listing price, while a record 19% included both a concession and a listing-price cut that occurred while the home was on the market. A record 11% included all three.

Phoenix Saw the Biggest Jump in Concessions

In Phoenix, sellers gave concessions to buyers in 62.9% of home sales in the fourth quarter, up from 33.2% a year earlier. That 29.7-percentage-point increase is the largest among the 25 U.S. metropolitan areas for which data was available. Next came Seattle (25.6 ppts), Las Vegas (22.2 ppts), San Diego (20.7 ppts) and Detroit (20.4 ppts).

Phoenix and Las Vegas are among the fastest cooling markets after they soared in popularity during the pandemic as scores of remote workers moved in, searching for relative affordability and warm weather.

“It took a while, but seller expectations are coming back down to earth. Concessions were common before the pandemic, and we may be returning to that norm,” Welborn said. “Sellers realize they’re not going to get $80,000 over the asking price like their neighbor did last year.”

Welborn said he has recently seen sellers offer credits of as much as $25,000 to cover repairs and closing costs, and that they’re also offering to pay for 2-1 mortgage-rate buydowns and warranties on household appliances. 

There were four metros in which concessions were less common compared with a year ago. In Austin, TX, sellers gave concessions to buyers in 33.3% of home sales, down from 38.1% a year earlier (-4.8 ppts). Next came Philadelphia (-2.7 ppts), New York (-2.4 ppts) and Chicago (-1.6 ppts).

Concessions Are Most Common in San Diego

In San Diego, sellers gave concessions to buyers in 73% of home sales in the fourth quarter—the highest share among the metros Redfin analyzed (San Diego also had the highest share a year ago). Next came Phoenix (62.9%), Portland, OR (61.6%), Las Vegas (61.3%) and Denver (58.4%).

In New York, sellers gave concessions to buyers in 13.4% of home sales—the lowest share among the metros Redfin analyzed. It was followed by San Jose, CA (14.4%), Boston (17.5%), Philadelphia (22%) and Austin (33.3%).

Metro-Level Summary

The table below includes 25 metros for which Redfin buyers’ agents recorded at least 50 closed deals in the fourth quarter of both 2021 and 2022. The national statistics in the first section of the report are representative of the entire country.

U.S. metro area Q4 2022: Share of home sales with concession Q4 2021: Share of home sales with concession Year-over-year change (percentage points)
Atlanta, GA 51.0% 36.4% 14.7 ppts
Austin, TX 33.3% 38.1% -4.8 ppts
Boston, MA 17.5% 14.0% 3.5 ppts
Charlotte, NC 41.7% 30.5% 11.2 ppts
Chicago, IL 44.7% 46.3% -1.6 ppts
Dallas, TX 49.4% 35.6% 13.8 ppts
Denver, CO 58.4% 42.7% 15.7 ppts
Detroit, MI 42.0% 21.6% 20.4 ppts
Houston, TX 41.4% 35.7% 5.7 ppts
Las Vegas, NV 61.3% 39.2% 22.2 ppts
Los Angeles, CA 53.2% 46.0% 7.2 ppts
Miami, FL 34.8% 28.7% 6.1 ppts
New York, NY 13.4% 15.8% -2.4 ppts
Orlando, FL 47.8% 30.0% 17.8 ppts
Philadelphia, PA 22.0% 24.7% -2.7 ppts
Phoenix, AZ 62.9% 33.2% 29.7 ppts
Portland, OR 61.6% 45.8% 15.8 ppts
Raleigh, NC 47.1% 38.3% 8.8 ppts
Sacramento, CA 55.2% 44.1% 11.2 ppts
San Antonio, TX 44.2% 29.8% 14.5 ppts
San Diego, CA 73.0% 52.3% 20.7 ppts
San Jose, CA 14.4% 9.0% 5.4 ppts
Seattle, WA 46.0% 20.4% 25.6 ppts
Tampa, FL 37.3% 24.1% 13.2 ppts
Washington, D.C. 45.3% 30.3% 15.0 ppts
National—U.S.A. 41.9% 30.9% 11.0 ppts


Lily Katz

Lily Katz

As a data journalist, Lily is passionate about helping readers understand complex facets of the housing market. She is particularly interested in the issues of climate change, race and gender equality and housing affordability. Prior to working at Redfin, Lily spent four years as a reporter at Bloomberg News in New York City.

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Taylor Marr

Taylor Marr is the deputy chief economist on the research team at Redfin. He is passionate about housing and urban policy and an advocate for increased mobility and affordability. He laid the framework for our migration data and reports and diligently tracks the housing market and economy. Before Redfin, Taylor built financial market index funds for Vanguard at the University of Chicago. Taylor went to graduate school for international economics in Berlin, where he focused on behavioral causes of the global housing bubble and subsequent policy responses. Taylor’s research has been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and The Economist. He was also recently the President of the Seattle Economics Council and collaborates frequently with the Fed, HUD, and the Census Bureau. Follow him on Twitter @tayloramarr or subscribe to his weekly newsletter on Substack here: https://taylormarr.substack.com

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