The Utah housing market is hotter than it’s ever been, in large part due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As more people are able to work remotely, they’re interested in settling down—and Utah’s affordable new homes are nothing short of a siren’s call. In fact, the Salt Lake City area is the West’s number one housing market right now—and there are no signs of it slowing down anytime soon. If you’re looking for an affordable new custom home in Utah, now is the time to buy. Prices will only continue to go up.
Here are some facts about Utah’s housing market:
- Many people are moving from California to Utah: Thanks to the proliferation of remote work, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, millions of people are moving. Some real estate sites are reporting that they’ve seen over a half million people from California looking at Utah homes in 2020. Whether they’re looking to escape the higher cost of living, or want to take the chance on a quieter, more rural destination, the impact on the housing market is clear.
- Heber City is the most popular destination: Surprisingly, rural Heber City has seen the most net in-migration, percentage-wise, over the past year. However, a good portion of Utah is seeing similar rates—which is why housing prices continue to go up, and homes spend less time on the market overall.
- Homes are only on the market an average of five days: Speaking of the market, if you find a home you love, you should put in an offer right away. Homes in Utah only spend an average of five days on the market. Compare that to the first quarter of 2020, where homes spent an average of 28 days on the market. Instead of having time to research, inspect and compare their potential home to others, buyers have to make immediate decisions. When you’re searching for a home, be prepared to make a snap decision.
- Prices have gone up 17 to 23 percent: Prices in Utah have been skyrocketing. Many areas are seeing price increases in the double digits, up to 23 percent of what they were in the beginning of 2020. Houses in Salt Lake County went from $400,000 to $468,000, while those in Utah County have gone up 20 percent. Tooele County has gone up 18 percent, and Weber County has gone up 23 percent. That’s a staggering change for a single year.
- Lumber prices have gone up 400 percent: What’s driving up custom home building prices? The lumber shortage definitely plays a role. The price of wood has gone up 400 percent—and since custom home builders and real estate sellers need to make a profit, too, home prices have gone up out of sheer necessity.
In short, if you’re planning to buy a new home anytime soon, you should act fast—or be prepared to wait it out for a long time to come.