Home tours were up 9 percent and offers up 22 percent from February to March, showing a spike in homebuyer activity, according to the most recent Real-Time Demand Pulse report from Redfin, an online real estate company.
The report, which is the only in the industry to analyze tour and offer data, may encourage potential homebuyers to go out and secure a home loan. As if the increase from February to March wasn’t dramatic enough, between the first and last weeks of March, the number of offers made on homes spiked 16 percent. In the same period last year, offers increased just 3 percent.
The interest in buying homes around the country has led to low inventories and increased competition, which, in turn, is leading to higher prices. In 2012, sales prices rose 7.3 percent, according to the Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller index.
The Redfin survey also showed that 75 percent of offers that the real estate company’s agents are working with have been a part of bidding wars, demonstrating the increased demand among potential homebuyers.
The report also showed Redfin’s agents have hit a high for the year in customers signing offers.
Though some analysts doubt a rebound to pre-recession levels in the housing market, there is much optimism due to rising home prices, increased activity and mortgage loans opening up to non-prime consumers.
Many homeowners are also taking advantage of record-low mortgage rates and refinancing their homes to much lower rates. If you’re interested in refinancing or buying a home, make sure you have your finances and credit in order.