Utah housing market sees more listings but slowing sales

Jul 29, 2022, 7:01 PM | Updated: 7:43 pm

SANDY, Utah — Utahns shopping for a home this summer have more options and less competition compared to during the home-buying fever of the last few years, according to the Salt Lake Board of Realtors.

The number of active, statewide listings on UtahRealEstate.com on July 28 totaled more than 9,300. That’s a 160% increase from the same time last year when there were only about 3,600 active listings, the board said.

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

In addition, the number of home sales in Salt Lake County fell by 15% during the second quarter of this year. Along the five counties comprising the Wasatch Front, single-family home sales dropped 10% compared to last year’s second quarter.

“After two years of a frenzied market with multiple offers tens of thousands of dollars above asking price, Utah’s real estate market is approaching normalcy,” Eskic said a prepared statement. “Instead of a home taking a couple days to sell, it probably will take a few weeks.”

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

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

The economic dashboard from the Salt Lake Chamber pointed out that Utah’s median home sales price fell slightly from $535,000 in May to $530,000 in June. However, June’s statewide median sales price was still an 18% increase from June of 2021.

“The economic dashboard is starting to show signs of tapering growth as inflation and interest rate hikes weigh on consumers,” said a statement from Derek Miller, the chamber’s president and CEO.

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

“We are so diverse and the job growth is showing strong upticks in every one of our sectors,” Chinn told KSL TV. “We’re not seeing a decline in any one of our sectors right now. That makes Utah very unique.”

However, the July report noted concern over a sharp decline in consumer confidence in Utah and across the nation.

“Utah’s broad economic growth continues to power our economy forward in the face of changing monetary policy and slipping consumer confidence,” said a statement from Natalie Gochnour, director of the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute. “The dashboard shows our economy is stabilizing in key sectors like housing and job growth. Along with sustained air travel and retail sales, we remain positioned for moderate growth, despite the economic dislocation other states are experiencing.”

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Utah housing market sees more listings but slowing sales