As the tryptophan began to wear off and thoughts shifted from turkey and cranberry sauce to Black Friday sales, consumers sharpened their sense for discounts and deals at stores throughout the nation. However, the smart shopper knows that is much more than just great sales on TVs, computers, microwaves, and toys. In many housing markets, you’ll find many homes are available at deep discounts, despite the continued national increase in home prices. For instance, if you’re willing to move to Albuquerque, NM, you’ve got a one-in-five chance (21.9%, to be exact) of finding a discount on a home.
Discounts are available in nearly every corner of the country, in cities big and small, if you aren’t determined to live in a high-cost market like California. According to new data from Zillow, here's a list of the top 10 places to find discounts on home prices, ranked by the percentage of discounted listings:Albuquerque, NM – 21.9% Boise, ID – 19.8% Chicago, IL – 19.2% Phoenix, AZ – 19% Philadelphia, PA – 18.7% Omaha, NE – 18.5% Baltimore, MD – 18.5% Houston, TX – 17.9% Hartford, CT – 17.8% Virginia Beach, VA – 17.6%
**Figures as of September 2016
While many price reductions are minor (such as a 1% discount), some of the markets feature huge discounts, like a $55K drop in price for a Philadelphia home, or a $25K deal on a house in Baltimore. Again, some of these discounts might not dazzle the eye, but consider that home prices have risen by roughly 10% over the last year in Florida, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, and Utah. Every state except Delaware (and the District of Columbia) has seen an annual increase in home values, so even a small drop or weakness in listing prices is a big deal to the potential homebuyer.
When speaking with your real estate agent or realtor about your home-hunting plans, make sure to ask about discounted listings, and what may cause a home to have a drop in its listing price. It may be something specific to the home, but in markets where discounts are popping up in increasing numbers, there’s likely a larger issue at play – too many homes on the market (too much supply), affordability issues, or something unique going on in the market (for a smaller metro, this could be a major employer leaving town).
Bottom Line: Discounts and deals are out there, but to find them, you’ve got to be a smart shopper, flexible with location, and have an agent or realtor who is just as determined as you are.