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You've heard of days on market for a listing? How about a year on market for buyers? A new survey found that one out of three buyers has been looking for a home for more than a year and now they are ready to grovel.

One-third of Buyers on Market More than a Year

You’ve heard of days on market for a listing? How about a year on market for buyers? A new survey found that one out of three buyers has been looking for a home for more than a year and now they are ready to grovel.

A new Century 21 survey found that 33 percent of buyers currently searching for a home have been on the hunt for more than a year, and that the vast majority of them are willing to negotiate with sellers and make compromises to find their next home. In particular, prospective homebuyers are willing to compromise on popular amenities and their home’s location.

Listed inventory in April was approximately 14 percent below one year earlier and 32 percent below the level of April 2011 , which has made it difficult for buyers to find homes. With an increase of buyers coming into the market, the lack of available homes for sale has presented challenges for first-time and move-up homebuyers.

“For the last few years, certain homeowners have been hesitant to list their homes due to unfavorable economic conditions,” said Rick Davidson, president and CEO, Century 21 Real Estate LLC. “Today, the recovery in housing continues to gain momentum, and with so many buyers in the market who are competing for so few available homes, it is a great time for sellers to speak with a real estate professional about the advantages of listing their home.”

The Century 21 spring selling survey shows there are plenty of serious buyers in the market who are actively making offers, but due to low inventory and many houses receiving multiple offers, bidding wars are becoming more common.

  • Some 33 percent of those searching for a home say they have been at it for over a year, while 67 percent have been searching for up to a year.
  • Offers are being made, but not many are accepted: 42 percent of those searching for homes have made an offer in the past six months yet only 11 percent have had their offers accepted.
  • Current homeowners looking to buy are more than twice as likely to have their purchase offers accepted as those who rent (15 percent vs. 6 percent). However, renters are nearly three times as likely as homeowners to report that they made an offer but couldn’t agree on price (14 percent vs. 5 percent).

“The recovery has transformed the mindset of many buyers and sellers who grew accustomed to the buyers’ market we saw for years,” said Davidson. “Right now, we’re in a situation where buyer confidence is building back up and demand is strong. As our survey indicates, sellers are now in a more favorable position.”

With competition stiff among buyers, Century 21 Real Estate’s spring home selling survey reveals that many are willing to make compromises on both the home itself and in the negotiations with the sellers in order to get their offer accepted.

  • 85 percent of home searchers are willing to go above and beyond in order to force the deal through. Of those willing to go above and beyond, the top compromises they’d be willing to make are:
  • 51 percent would be flexible with the closing time.
  • 31 percent would compromise by purchasing the house as-is.
  • 29 percent would compromise by putting more cash down than they had planned on.
  • 85 percent of home searchers are willing to compromise on amenities/features.
  • 58 percent would compromise on a built-in pool.
  • 49 percent would compromise on a finished basement.
  • 37 percent would compromise on an updated kitchen (e.g., stainless steel appliances).
  • 37 percent would compromise on walk-in-closets.
  • 88 percent of buyers are willing to compromise on location-related attributes.
  • 42 percent would compromise on the length of their work commute.
  • 36 percent would compromise on access to restaurants, shopping and general conveniences.
  • 35 percent would compromise on proximity to friends and family.

This survey was conducted online within the United States from May 2 to May 6, 2013, among 2,058 adults ages 18 and older, of whom 365 were identified as searching for a home to purchase, by Harris Interactive on behalf of Century 21 Real Estate LLC via Harris’ Quick Query omnibus product. Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, education, region and household income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online; a full methodology is available.

3 comments

  1. Bet that makes you happy. I’m looking for the “right” realtor.

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