Share of All-Cash Home Sales Still Way Above Pre-Crisis 'Normal' Levels

The all-cash share of home sales peaked in January 2011, when cash transactions accounted for a striking 46.6 percent of total home sales nationally, fueled in large part by investors scooping up foreclosed or otherwise below-market properties.

Prior to the housing crisis, the cash sales share of total home sales averaged about 25 percent. But cash sales are still in lofty territory, accounting for 33.9 percent of total home sales in October 2015, down 2.6 percentage points from 36.4 percent in October 2014, according to CoreLogic’s most recently available figures that were just released.
If the cash sales share continues to fall at the same rate it did in October 2015, the share should hit 25 percent by mid-2018, CoreLogic says.
The housing market is going through a big transition as foreclosure sales have decreased signficantly, although not quite to pre-crisis levels. Meanwhile, cash sales and investor buying in some areas remains significantly above historical levels. That creates obstacles in some markets were buyers of low-price homes, or first-time buyers, have fewer choices among properties on the market.
CoreLogic finds that real estate-owned (REO) sales had the largest cash sales share in October 2015 at 59.7 percent. Resales had the next highest cash sales share at 33.2 percent, followed by short sales at 31.3 percent and newly constructed homes at 16.7 percent.

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