Many U.S. Cities Becoming Sellers’ Real Estate Markets, According to ZipRealty

Western metros are the strongest as the gap between the list price and close price narrows nationwide

EMERYVILLE, Calif., Feb. 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — ZipRealty, Inc. ( (NASDAQ: ZIPR), the leading online technology-enabled residential real estate brokerage company, has released a list of the Top 10 Best Cities for Home Sellers as part of its List Price to Close Price Ratio Report, which is based on MLS data covering 32 U.S. markets. The exclusive study found that the gap between the listing price and closing price of an average home in the United States continues to narrow, with a growing number of sellers able to achieve more than 98% of their home’s listing price. In addition, the median days a home spent on the market dropped to 44 nationwide in 2012, a 23% decline from 2011’s 57 days.

“A limited inventory of homes on the market, combined with the extremely low cost of mortgage financing, has resulted in homes selling above asking price in many western markets, boosting the average listing to closing price ratio,” explains Lanny Baker, Chief Executive Officer and President of ZipRealty. “The median amount of time that homes are listed on the market before they sell has shortened by more than two weeks since last year, and in some areas we are seeing one-in-five newly listed homes sell in less than seven days. Multiple-bid situations are also increasingly common in the markets we reviewed.”

In January 2011, the list to close price ratio in the U.S. reached 97.1%, and increased 40 basis points to 97.5% in 2012. The ratio hit 98.3% nationwide as of December 2012, according to ZipRealty data.

The Top 10 Best Cities for Home Sellers based on ZipRealty’s List Price to Close Price Ratio Report are: San Francisco, San Diego, Sacramento, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orange County, Denver, Tucson,Portland and Seattle.

ZipRealty’s List Price to Close Price Ratio Report also analyzes the median days on market, which continues to decline in many of the metropolitan areas served by the company. Real estate in western MSAs spent the fewest days on the market annually, with Silicon Valley homes showing the steepest decline. The median time a home in the Silicon Valley spent on the market was 32 days in 2011, compared to 17 days last year.

Phoenix homes spent 43 days on the market in 2011, versus 25 days in 2012, a 42% decrease. Median days on market in Denver declined similarly from 37 days in 2011 to 22 days in 2012, or by 41%. Homes in Sacramento, San Francisco, Austin, Dallas/Fort Worth, Portland, Washington, D.C., and Orlandorounded out the list of metros with the greatest decreases in days on market.

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