Bidding Wars Jump as Top Reason Buyers Can’t Make Purchase

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An earlier post revealed that 66% of buyers who were actively engaged in the process of finding a home in the third quarter of 2021 have spent 3+ months searching for a home without success.  For only the third time in this series history, the top reason these long-time searchers haven’t pulled the trigger is not because they can’t find a home at an affordable price (36%), but because they keep getting outbid by other offers (45%).   At the start of this series, in the first quarter of 2018, only 18% blamed bidding wars for their home buying woes.

When asked what they are most likely to do next if still unable to find a home in the next few months, 49% of active buyers searching for 3+ months in the third quarter of 2021 said they will continue looking for the ‘right’ home in the same location, up from 42% a quarter earlier.  The share that will accept a smaller/older home also rose during this period, from 24% to 29%.

Meanwhile, the share who plan to give up their home search until next year or later rose from 20% to 22% between the second and third quarters of 2021, but that’s still lower than in the final quarter of 2020, when it reached a series-high of 28%.

* The Housing Trends Report (HTR) is a research product created by the NAHB Economics team with the goal of measuring prospective home buyers’ perceptions about the availability and affordability of homes for-sale in their markets.  The HTR is produced quarterly to track changes in buyers’ perceptions over time.  All data are derived from national polls of representative samples of American adults conducted for NAHB by Morning Consult.  Results are seasonally adjusted.  A description of the poll’s methodology and sample characteristics can be found here.  This is the final post in a series of six highlighting results for the third quarter of 2021. See previous posts on plans to buy, new vs. existing preference, housing availability, housing affordability, and active buyers.



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