New listings were up 12%, but the number of homes for sale fell 31% to a new all-time low.
Key housing market takeaways for 400+ U.S. metro areas during the 4-week period ending December 20:
- The median home sale price increased 14% year over year to $320,714.
- Pending home sales were up 34% year over year. In the single week ending December 20, pending sales were up 30% from the same week a year earlier.
- New listings of homes for sale were up 12% from a year earlier.
- Active listings (the number of homes listed for sale at any point during the period) fell 31% from 2019 to a new all-time low.
- 39% of homes that went under contract had an accepted offer within the first two weeks on the market, well above the 26% rate during the same period a year ago.
- The average sale-to-list price ratio, which measures how close homes are selling to their asking prices, declined slightly to 99.4%—still 1.5 percentage points higher than a year earlier.
- For the week ending December 20, the seasonally adjusted Redfin Homebuyer Demand Index—a measure of requests for home tours and other services from Redfin agents—was up 23% from pre-pandemic levels in January and February.
- Mortgage purchase applications decreased 5% week over week (seasonally adjusted) and were up 26% from a year earlier (unadjusted) during the week ending December 18. For the week ending December 24, 30-year mortgage rates fell to 2.66%, another new all-time low. Rates have been below 3% since late July.
“Going into the new year, it will truly be out with the old, because there will be very few homes from 2020 left on the market,” said Redfin chief economist Daryl Fairweather. “So those who resolve to buy a home in 2021 may need to wait with bated breath for sellers to list their homes. Redfin’s forecasts suggest the new year will bring many more new listings, but they will likely be snatched up quickly. So if you are a homebuyer, now is a good time to get pre-approved for a mortgage, and come up with your wishlist, so you can act quickly when your dream home hits the market.”