The National Association of Realtors (NAR) predicts that the number of home sales will increase next year, but the rate of price appreciation will slow. Speaking at the 2018 Realtors® Conference & Expo, NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun rejected speculation about another housing bubble, saying “…people are living within their means and not purchasing homes they cannot afford. This is a stronger, more stable market compared to the loosely regulated market leading up to the bust.”
Mortgage interest rates receded slightly in the week ending November 1 according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey. Even though the 30-year fixed rate mortgage has been rising all year, the government-sponsored entity says, “…the chronic lack of entry-level supply is a larger hurdle than higher mortgage rates because choices are limited and the inventory shortage has caused home prices to rise well above fundamentals.”
September new home sales were down 13.2% year-over-year, following downward revisions for sales in June, July and August. Economist Elliot Eisenberg, PhD says it’s not necessarily a sinister stat, noting that “…housing sales need to consistently fall about 20% Y-o-Y before a recession follows.”
Homeownership is up according to the Census Bureau. The U.S. homeownership rate reached 64.4% in the third quarter, up from 64.3% in Q2 and 63.9% year-over-year.