It’s Easier to Buy a Home in These 5 US Cities Than It Was a Year Ago

  • It’s a tough time to be a homebuyer: prices are high and mortgage rates are still relatively high.
  • But in most US cities, it’s actually gotten easier for buyers to negotiate prices and sales terms. 
  • Here are five cities from North Carolina to Hawaii where power has shifted to buyers the most. 

There at least one glimmer of hope for homebuyers lamenting still-sky-high mortgage rates and stubbornly expensive house prices.

Power is shifting into their hands in many cities across the US. 

Last month, it took sellers in 98% of the America’s largest cities longer to sell than it did a year prior, according to a an April 3 report from online brokerage When homes linger on the market, sellers cut prices and offer concessions to buyers like closing costs or mortgage-rate buydowns.

That’s good news for those looking. In most places across the country, buyers can get a better deal from sellers keen to close a sale than they could fathom in the spring of 2021. 

Properties that sit longer on the market are also a sign of less competition among buyers.

Indeed, the number of people buying a home has dropped significantly since the spring of 2022, which was when mortgage rates began to skyrocket from pandemic lows around 3% in January to as high as 7% by October. Higher monthly payments deter many people who would otherwise be eager to buy.

When the pool of people house-hunting and making offers is smaller, there are fewer bidding wars, and sellers become even more willing to adjust prices or other terms of a sales contract to meet a serious buyer’s wishes.  

Those same relatively higher mortgage rates and property prices that still hover well above prepandemic levels, though, make it exceedingly hard for many Americans who want to buy a home to do so. Economists say a massive dearth of supply, or homes for sale, around the country will underpin high home prices for years. 

Still, some improvement is better than none for buyers — especially those who want to buy in hot parts of the country, including the southern swath of states from Georgia to Arizona known as the Sun Belt and idyllic New England towns. Places like those are seeing the biggest housing-market slowdowns.

Here are the five cities — from Hilo, Hawaii to Lebanon, New Hampshire — where buyers have gained the most power since last spring. All data is from March 2023 and sourced from

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