The latest housing data shows that the median price of homes in Utah’s most populous county rose to $ 550,000 in the third quarter of 2021.
That’s a new high – and a 28% jump from the median price of $ 430,000 in the same time frame from 2020. That means Salt Lake County homebuyers paid an average of 120. $ 000 more than a year ago, according to the Salt Lake Board of Realtors.
But the number of home sales has fallen by double-digit percentages. In the third quarter of 2021, 11,033 homes of all housing types sold on the Wasatch Front, down 18% from the 13,374 homes sold in the third quarter of 2020, according to the Salt Lake Board of Realtors.
This indicates that the Utah market has “stabilized,” after the “great binge eating” of 2020, said Matt Ulrich, chair of the Salt Lake Board of Realtors.
âFor the buyers, for the sellers, for the agents, it was just crazy. It was chaos, “Ulrich said of 2020.” Now it’s normalizing. It is stabilizing. … But we’re still going to have a record year for sales.
2021 is still shaping up to be the second best year for home sales in Wasatch Front, just after 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic shook the national housing market – particularly in the West in states like Idaho and Utah – as many Americans have reassessed their lives and left the big, expensive cities in search of more spacious homes at lower prices.
In 2021, Ulrich said realtors are still seeing multiple offers on homes. âMaybe we don’t see 20-30 (deals per house), but we still see a handful. Prices keep going up, we just need more inventory.
Ulrich called the 2021 market more “maintainable” than the 2020 market. “Nobody wants to see prices increase by 25%.” He noted that some buyers continue to “sit on the sidelines” in the hope that prices will eventually drop, but experts don’t see that happening anytime soon.
On the contrary, Ulrich said he sees today’s market as the “calm before a potential storm”.
Once interest rates start to rise, which some experts say could happen at the end of the year (although there are no guarantees), Ulrich said that âthis is going to be a another crazy market. I’m not necessarily impatient.
This “storm,” Ulrich said, could be another frenzy. Once interest rates seem to change, prices are unlikely to drop enough to offset rates, so “it’s just going to get more expensive.”
âWhen they start to go upâ¦ then you’ll see people wanting to cash in to get a good interest rate before it goes away,â he said.
The most expensive Wasatch Front postal codes
In the third quarter of 2021, the zip code with the highest median selling price was 84004, which is home to Alpine, a Utah County suburb in the foothills east of Point of the Mountain, known for its large lots and massive houses.
Here is the ranking of median single-family home selling prices of the 10 most expensive zip codes in the third quarter of 2021, according to the Salt Lake Board of Realtors:
- Alpine, Utah County, 84004 – $ 1.05 million.
- Emigration Canyon to Salt Lake City, 84108 – $ 830,000.
- Draper, Salt Lake County, 84020 – $ 825,000.
- The Avenues of Salt Lake City, 84103 – $ 825,000.
- Sandy, Salt Lake County, 84092 – $ 800,000.
- Eden, Weber County, 84310 – $ 792,500.
- Holladay, Salt Lake County, 84117 – $ 735,000.
- Millcreek Canyon in Salt Lake City, 84109 – $ 725,000.
- Southern Jordan, Salt Lake County, 84095 – $ 720,000.
- Holladay, Salt Lake County, 84124 – $ 704,375.
Salt Lake ranks among the least affordable subways in the country
Salt Lake City is the 10th least affordable metropolitan area in the country for housing, according to a new study released this week by Real Estate Witch, which is owned by real estate site Clever Real Estate.
The site revealed that Salt Lake City had an average house price of $ 485,813 in 2021, compared to an average household income of $ 92,900 and a house price-to-income ratio of 5.2. The average ratio recommended by experts, according to Clever Real Estate, is 2.6.
The report indicates that only six of the 50 most populous metropolitan areas in the United States have a house price-to-income ratio less than or equal to the maximum recommended ratio of 2.6: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Cleveland, Ohio; The City of Oklahoma; Saint Louis, Missouri; Cincinnati, Ohio; and Birmingham, Alabama.
Record increases in home values ââhave a silver lining: Fewer Americans are underwater in their mortgages.
Across the country, the percentage of homes with underwater mortgages fell 54% in the most populous metropolitan areas, from an average of 12.2% to 5.6%, according to the Real Estate Witch report. .
The Salt Lake City metropolitan area saw the largest decline in underwater mortgages in the country: a drop of 1,081%, from 18.5% in 2015 to 1.6% in 2020, according to the report. This is compared to the metro with the second biggest drop, Las Vegas, which fell 513%, from 21% to 3.4%.
However, these numbers have a dark side.
“These same owners could be on the verge of being devastated in the next real estate crash,” says the Real Estate Witch report. “It’s especially troubling for people who bought homes during the pandemic because they had the least amount of time to pay off their mortgage.”
In Utah, experts continue to say they don’t see a “bubble” looming on the state’s housing market horizon, though they warn of a “severely imbalanced” housing market , especially when it comes to affordability. Today, more than half of Utah households cannot afford a home at the state’s median price, according to a report released earlier this month by Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute of the University of Utah.