Insider Report Roundup: A Chilly January for Sellers & Buyers

Earlier this week we published another round of Insider Reports on our local blogs in Seattle, the Bay Area, Washington/Baltimore, Chicago, and new this month: Boston. Our local experts around the country combined a look into Redfin’s vast database of market data with the read from our agents in the field to bring you the best insight about what’s going on in each market. Plus—spreadsheets chock-full of market data all the way down to the neighborhood level.

Here are the biggest factors that stuck out to us across our markets:

Sellers in Hibernation: Although the new year usually means a steady stream of new homes on the market, buyers in Seattle, Washington/Baltimore, and parts of the Bay Area saw their choices shrink in January. Where are the sellers? Our thinking is that many homeowners who may be thinking about selling are still sitting out the market because they know they won’t be able to get the price they really want or need. If prices start to increase again, that could get many of these sellers off the fence and back into the market.

Buyers Calm Before the Spring Storm: While closed sales were down from January 2010 almost everywhere, early-stage indicators such as Redfin’s tour volume and pending sales metrics seem to be pointing to a sharp increase in buyer activity over the next few months. We’ll definitely be keeping our eye on this as the story progresses into spring.

No Big Price Recovery Yet: Prices on the West Coast dropped in January, while prices in Chicago and on the East Coast were more mixed. The one consistent factor seems to be that nobody is seeing any big price recovery just yet.

So what are you seeing out there in your market? Are you buying or selling a home and running into interesting market dynamics? Share your story below.

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