Polls show homebuyers are regaining their bargaining power

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A home for sale in Patchogue, New York on May 17, 2022. (Steve Pfost/Newsday RM via Getty Images)

Homebuyers win something back Purchasing power in the event of market changes according to an industry expert, “predominantly” preferred sellers in the last two years.

In a recent Realtor.com survey, 92% of homeowners who sold their home in the last year said they “accepted some buyer-friendly terms.” About 41% accepted some contractual contingency related to appraisals, home inspections, home sales and financing.

This data suggests negotiations over house prices and contract terms are back on the table, according to Realtor.com.

MORTGAGE RATES PEAK AS HOME PRICES BREAK A NEW RECORD

Homes selling at or above asking price peaked in February and March at 82% Mortgage rates fluctuated at 4%. Last month, 69% of homes sold at or above offer as mortgage rates hovered near 6%. According to mortgage buyer Freddie Mac, the 30-year fixed rate was 5.55% last week.

Meanwhile, the number of homeowners selling under offer rose from 18% at the start of the year to 31% last month, according to the real estate listings site.

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A “For Sale” sign outside a home in Nashville, Tennessee, U.S., on Sunday, October 24, 2021. (Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Buyers are becoming increasingly selective. Almost all homeowners surveyed, 95%, who sold their home within the last month indicated that the buyer requested an inspection. That’s up from 82% of sellers who sold six to 12 months ago.

RISING INTEREST RATES COULD ‘SUPRESS’ DEMAND IN HOUSING MARKET, EXPERT WARNS

The number of buyers requesting a home repair after a home inspection more than doubled last month from six and 12 months ago.

In contrast, the number of sellers who refused to pay for repairs fell from 8% to zero, from six months ago to 12 months ago.

“The overheated housing market of the past two years, which overwhelmingly favored sellers, is beginning to regain a sense of normalcy, which is welcome news for home buyers,” George Ratiu, manager of economic research at Realtor.com, said in a statement.

Ratiu said higher mortgage rates coupled with steeper prices “have noticeably cooled demand in the first half-year.”

Now that more homeowners are listing their properties, “rising inventory is motivating more of them to resort to price cuts to successfully complete transactions,” he added.

Despite this market shift, Ratiu said the majority of recent sellers are still satisfied with the outcome of the sale.

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