Utah housing market sees more listings but slows sales

SAND, Utah — Utahns buying homes this summer have more options and less competition compared to the homebuying fever of recent years, according to the Salt Lake Board of Realtors.

The number of active statewide listings on UtahRealEstate.com on July 28 was over 9,300. That’s a 160% increase over the same time last year, so that there were only about 3,600 active registrations, the council said.

“The fact that we now have more inventory means there are more options, and instead of facing 20 people, you may be facing two or three,” Economist Dejan Eskic board chief and senior fellow at the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute, KSL TV told.

Additionally, the number of home sales in Salt Lake County fell 15% in the second quarter of this year. Along the five counties that make up the Wasatch Front, single-family home sales fell 10% from the second quarter of last year.

“After two years of a frenzied market with multiple offers tens of thousands of dollars above asking price, the Utah real estate market is approaching normalcy,” Eskic said in a prepared statement. “Instead of selling a house in days, it will probably take weeks.”

Also on Friday, the Salt Lake Chamber released an economic outlook update in conjunction with the Gardner Institute showing that home prices have begun to moderate.

“Right now, for the first time, we’ve only seen a slight bend in that upward curve where house prices are starting to stabilize,” said Ginger Chinn, the chamber’s vice president for public policy.

The Salt Lake Chamber’s Economic Scorecard pointed out that the median selling price of Utah homes fell slightly from $535,000 in May to $530,000 in June. However, the statewide June median sale price was still up 18% from June 2021.

“The economic scorecard is starting to show signs of slowing growth as inflation and rising interest rates weigh on consumers,” said Derek Miller, president and chief executive of the chamber.

Miller’s statement went on to say that Utah’s economy is strong. The report notes that Utah’s 2% unemployment rate is the third lowest in the nation.

“We are so diverse and job growth is showing strong increases in each of our sectors,” Chinn told KSL TV. “We are not currently seeing any decline in any of our sectors. This makes Utah very unique.

However, the July report noted concerns about a sharp drop in consumer confidence in Utah and across the country.

“Utah’s broad economic growth continues to propel our economy in the face of changing monetary policy and declining consumer confidence,” said Natalie Gochnour, director of the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute. “The scoreboard shows that our economy is stabilizing in key areas like housing and job growth. Along with strong air travel and retail sales, we remain positioned for moderate growth, despite economic dislocation in other states.

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