When people hear anything but positive news about the housing market, it brings to mind unpleasant memories of 2008 and the financial crisis that rocked the nation.
And as you may have noticed, the hot housing market of the past two years is entering a transition period. With interest rates on the rise, fewer people are buying houses and prices are increasing at a slower pace.
Don’t worry, though. The Transnation Title team always has your back, and we’re here to calm your nerves.
A lot has changed since 2008 in the real estate industry. Today’s market is rooted in much more secure fundamentals. Let’s take a closer look below.
Prior to 2008, risky (some might even call predatory) lending practices were much more prominent. Lenders would gladly offer a loan to unqualified borrowers (low credit scores, no down payment, and even no income).
Many buyers signed risky loans without fully understanding what they were getting into.
These practices altered the fundamentals of the housing boom, which was rooted in speculation rather than supply and demand. When prices started to dip, the speculation-fueled demand vanished. This left plenty of supply and lead to a steep drop in prices that spurred the global financial crisis.
Rather than speculation, today’s housing market is now rooted in the fundamentals of supply and demand. Housing prices have been rising due to a low supply of homes on the market, a trend caused by developers building fewer homes since 2008.
As a result, housing prices increased steadily until the pandemic hit in 2020, and prices skyrocketed.
As the pandemic unfolded, people migrated away from larger cities into the suburbs, driving demand in these areas. Those already living there, though, had little incentive to move, and there weren’t many houses for buyers to choose from.
At the same time, supply chain issues disrupted home construction. Demand outpaced supply, and prices shot through the roof.
In March, the Federal Reserve raised interest rates for the first time since 2018 and then raised them again earlier this month. More increases are likely on the way as part of the effort to curb inflation.
Because of those two hikes, mortgage rates have jumped from 3% to 6% since, pricing some potential buyers out of the market. Many are worried that this signals the beginning of a new crash. To be sure, there are some concerning signals.
However, while Lawrence Yun, the chief economist of the National Association of REALTORS®, projected a 10% decrease in home sales in 2022 during remarks in mid-April, he also estimated that home prices will continue to rise by 5% this year. That’s because the fundamentals driving the market are still the same: supply still lags behind demand, so prices are still rising.
These are interesting times in real estate, to be sure. Transnation Title is committed to working with you to continue delivering for our great Michigan, Indiana, and Florida customers.
While sellers may not see dozens of offers above asking price anymore, the rate increase should bring equilibrium to the market, not a crash. This means it’s still a good time to list, we promise!
After two years of insane prices, calmer – but still active – days may lie ahead. There’s no need to panic. These changing times, though, underscore the importance of working with a title and escrow partner who provides the personal solutions and protection you can trust. Transnation Title is the team you want working with you.