Beware, home buyers: A record number of homes are selling above their asking price

This year’s spring home-buying season is set to be one of the most competitive ever, as the pandemic continues to stoke interest in homeownership. And home prices are skyrocketing as a result.

new report from real-estate brokerage Redfin RDFN, -0.22% found that 39% of homes sold above their listing price during the four-week period ending March 21, an all-time high. That figure is 15 percentage points higher than during the same stretch of time a year ago.

The median home-sale price was $331,590, Redfin reported, which represented a 16% increase from a year ago. Researchers noted, though, that the year-over-year comparisons may be skewed by the fact that around a year ago, states were beginning to issue stay-at-home orders as COVID-19 cases ballooned, and those orders caused a temporary halt in real-estate activity.

Nevertheless, the rise in home prices is clear. And at a time when mortgage rates are also soaring, it’s creating a much more challenging environment for first-time buyers.

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