December 4, 2009 / 11:38 PM / 10 years ago

US home buyers' negotiating power falls-Zillow

NEW YORK, Dec 4 (Reuters) - Home buyers in much of the United States paid thousands of dollars below asking prices in October, but had slightly less negotiating power than in September, real estate website Zillow.com said this week.

According to October Zillow Real Estate Market Reports, buyers paid 2.7 percent less, or a median of $5,741 below the listing price on homes bought in October, down from $6,161, or 2.9 percent, less for homes bought in September.

Buyers’ negotiating power peaked in January, when buyers were paying 4.6 percent less than last listing price, a median of $10,096, Zillow said.

Meanwhile, 22.7 percent of all homes listed for sale on Zillow had at least one price reduction as of the end of October, down from 24.7 percent in September. The median U.S. price reduction was 6.5 percent off the original listing price, the reports showed.

In some markets, buyers continued to negotiate large discounts. Buyers were able to negotiate the biggest discounts in Florida markets, with Sarasota topping the list with a median discount of 7.6 percent. Some Northeast markets were also near the top of the list, with Cape Cod, Massachusetts; Stamford, Connecticut; and New York, New York Metropolitan Statistical Areas, or MSAs in the top 25.

On the other end of the spectrum, buyers paid the same as or more than the last listing price in 14 markets, most of which were in California. the reports showed.

Reporting by Julie Haviv; Editing by Diane Craft Reuters Messaging: julie.haviv.reuters.com@reuters.net; e-mail: julie.haviv@thomsonreuters.com; +1-646-223-6153

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