Making It in the Bay

Latest on Bay Area Housing Market: Sale Prices Jump, Rents Fall During Pandemic

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Two housing studies show different trends in Bay Area prices.

The pandemic housing shift is on and is pulling the region's real estate market in different directions: home sale prices are going up and rents are coming down.

According to Redfin, because of fewer homes on the market, but also because buyers are more comfortable than ever using technology to shop instead of being there in person.

"We're seeing nearly half of all home buyers saying they've made an offer without seeing the home in person first," said. "And that allows people to be really fast." said Daryl Fairweather, a chief economist with Redfin.

But rents are also dropping fast.

Zillow's latest data shows recession and the pandemic are combining to drive down prices.

"The rental market is under pressure from a few directions at once," Zillow economist Jeff Tucker said.

Not to mention that working from home means many do not have to move in the Bay Area in the first place.

"If you've started a job at a tech company in the last few months, a lot of them have not moved to the Bay Area," Tucker said. "They don't need to because they're not going to go to the officer there."

It turns out the drop in rents is more pronounced in urban downtown areas than in the suburbs because many no longer have to live close to the office, and another reason being many things people take advantage of living in downtown are at least partially closed.

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