"If you’re shopping for a home, chances are you’re looking at homes that are more expensive than the one you would actually buy. We’ve been monitoring this trend, and now we’re noticing the gap between the price of homes people look at online and the price of homes people buy is narrowing, especially in markets where home prices have risen the most.
Seattle is a great example. In 2014, the median list price of Seattle homes was $429,000. But the median list price of homes viewed on Redfin.com was 11 percent higher, $478,000. Since then, the median list price has jumped to $519,000, but the median price of homes viewed on Redfin.com hasn’t kept pace. So far this year it’s just $6,000 above the list price.
It makes sense that people look at homes that are out of their price range, especially when you remember that we’re counting views of home listing pages on Redfin.com and not the number of prospective buyers who come through the door. It’s easy for people to view photos of homes online. People like to look at nice kitchens, even if they don’t intend to buy the home.
But what’s really going on? As home prices skyrocketed in the nation’s hottest markets, the price of homes people have checked out online hasn’t meaningfully changed.