Multiple offers: the new norm

Competition returns to slumping markets

Up-market homes consistently sell above asking in a New Jersey suburb. Bidding wars break out in hot neighborhoods in Cape Cod, Chicago and Seattle. Short sales in some Florida and California markets draw as many as 40 bids.

It’s a far cry from 2006, but brokers and agents across the country say multiple offers are once again the norm in specific corners of the market.

"The banks are purposely putting them on the market under value and creating a frenzy," says Kristi Townsend …