SEATTLE, June 25, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — (NASDAQ: RDFN) — The nation’s top iBuying companies purchased 4,383 homes in the first quarter of 2021, according to a new report from Redfin (www.redfin.com), the technology-powered real estate brokerage. While that’s down 6.1% from a year earlier, it’s up 20.6% from the prior quarter—a sign that iBuyers are continuing to ramp up after pausing business at the beginning of the pandemic.
Still, iBuyers make up a tiny portion of the overall housing market, purchasing just 0.5% of homes that sold across the 418 U.S. metropolitan areas tracked by Redfin in the first quarter. That’s down from a peak of 0.8% in the second half of 2019 but up from 0.3% in the fourth quarter of 2020.
The report is based on a Redfin analysis of MLS and public-records data on home purchases and sales made by well-known national iBuyers: RedfinNow (Redfin’s iBuying business), Opendoor, Zillow Offers (Zillow’s iBuying business), Offerpad and Bungalo.
The term “iBuyer” (short for instant buyer) is used to describe real estate companies that purchase houses from homeowners in quick cash transactions by using algorithms to evaluate a property’s worth based on comparable market data. iBuyers typically charge sellers a higher fee than a traditional real estate agent would given the certainty of a cash offer with a flexible move-out day and the convenience of avoiding home prep, showings and open houses. These companies then make any necessary improvements to…