Decreased demand for new homes in Omaha presents opportunity for buyers

The low demand for new houses is leading to negotiating opportunities for Omaha homebuyers.
Published: Sep. 5, 2023 at 5:43 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - The growing western part of the Omaha metro has plenty of new homes that are ready or almost ready for a buyer.

While the supply is there, the demand has dropped, likely because of increased mortgage rates.

Bryan Hilderbrand with Hildy Homes said this time last year they were getting about five offers per home. Now it’s one or two.

“Last year was a crazy year,” said Hilderbrand. “I think we closed 98 houses last year where usually 80 is more of a normal for us. Where now this year is a hard-fought 80.”

He and his twin brother Ryan started building homes more than 20 years ago. Since they started they added more than 800 homes to the market.

“It’s not like last year where the price of the house was this and you wrote the full price and out the door, you went,” said Ryan Hilderbrand.

It’s not good news for builders, but it could be good for buyers.

Local data shows new construction sales were down 6% this July compared to last July.

Real estate agent Ryan Renner said the decreased demand leaves more room to negotiate.

The existing home market is a different story.

“If you’re looking to buy this time, sometimes you can get a pretty good deal,” said Renner. “Right now because demand is down a little bit, there are a lot more things that are negotiable when you’re buying new construction. Builders obviously want to sell homes. So they’re looking for different ways to sell homes to people.”

The Hilderbrands say they offer to buy down mortgage rates, cover closing costs, or include perks like certain appliances or fence installations.

“I think builders in general, especially at Hildy, we’re willing to play ball more. We’ll do whatever we have to do to move houses,” said Bryan Hilderbrand.