Even during the usually slow holiday season, the property market is hotter than ever this year.
The low supply and the incredibly high demand caused by Covid have made buyers beyond the competition and sellers particularly picky. As a result, all cash deals favored by sellers are increasing in certain regions and at certain prices.
According to realtor.com, cash sales now make up around 36% of the market. Overall, this is only a very small increase compared to the previous year. However, cash sales in the northeast and west are increasing more dramatically by 3 and 2 percentage points, respectively. It does so despite the fact that mortgage rates have hit record lows 14 times so far this year.
“This is likely a reflection of who is buying,” said Danielle Hale, chief economist at realtor.com. “While investors (more likely to use cash) are active in the market, non-corporate buyers, likely owner-occupiers, are a larger proportion of buyers during this period, which has an impact on the overall cash share.”
According to Redfin, the highest percentage of cash sales is in Nassau County, New York, on Long Island. Almost half of sales are in cash. Then the next six top markets are all in Florida, including big cities like Miami, Tampa, Fort Lauderdale, and West Palm Beach. Atlanta and Tucson, Arizona also have higher proportions of cash buyers.
In some markets, the percentage of cash buyers is much lower, such as Denver. San Diego; Oakland, California; and Washington, DC
Cash behavior has also changed significantly according to price points. All-cash sales increased 6 percentage points at the lowest price level ($ 0-100,000), where they account for 65% of the market, and 3 percentage points at the next level ($ 100,000-200,000) where they are 36% % make up realtor.com.
Investors have always preferred cash, but are doing so even more this year. They’re usually on the lower end of the market.
The mid-range price tiers stayed roughly the same, and cash sales actually fell in the $ 750,000 to $ 1 million range. Then at the top of the market (over $ 1 million), another jump in cash, with that share rising to 47% of all sales.
“Cash sales are likely to have risen in the upper end of the range as high-end buyers only had more cash to spare thanks to the performance of the stock markets during this period,” said Hale. “While the records have now been broken, the market hit new highs during this period, which tends to boost high-end home sales.”
High-end buyers may have the funds, but otherwise, buying with cash is certainly not easy, especially given today’s rapidly rising property prices. Some buyers reach out to family and friends, borrow the money to close the deal, and then take out a mortgage to repay once the sale is complete.
There are also several new companies trying to take advantage of the competition in the market by helping buyers make cash deals. To name just a few: Ribbon, Accept.inc and Reali offer different business models with the same goal of giving buyers the opportunity to make a cash offer.