The What: Pending Sales (PS), which is also called Under Contract (UC) in some markets, is the count of properties on which offers have been accepted in a given month. How a pending sale is defined within the MLS varies between MLSs, so be sure to check with your local organization to see how this is done.
The How: PS/UC is simply the count of purchase agreements signed between a range of dates.
The Oops: We are often asked why the number of PS/UC reported by ShowingTime doesn't match the number generated by an MLS search. This happens because ShowingTime maps data from MLSs in accordance with MLS and REALTOR® organization direction. This means that more statuses or fields than just the obvious "Pending" status could contribute to the figure we report.
On top of this, ShowingTime uses a variety of reporting filters that touch upon geography, date and property type, just to name a few. Any of these could cause discrepancies.
Data pull times and dates are very important, as well. ShowingTime pulls data at a very specific time every month on the same day – even a difference of several minutes can cause a change.
The Beauty: PS/UC is more than just another sales metric; it’s a leading indicator of closed sales activity.
Because it can take anywhere from 15 to 60 days for a home to close after it has gone under contract, a closed sale doesn't always get recorded during the same month it has been effectively taken off the market.
Not every PS/UC becomes a closed sale, so the nature of the relationship is not one to one. PS/UC can fall through for a variety of reasons. Some listings return to active status, while others are withdrawn from the market.
That said, when broken down by market segment or geographic area, signed purchase agreements can show where buyers are shopping and what they're shopping for, which are good things to know when trying to plan your business.
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