5 Leading Indicators to Gauge Where
The Real Estate Market Is Heading
There are several key indicators that may predict what to expect in the weeks and months ahead. Instead of relying solely on the more sluggish statistics of home sales and pending contracts, knowing the following info will give you a much clearer perspective on the market.
In total, there are five leading economic indicators:
#1: New listings available – On the supply side of things, signs of improvement are on the horizon.
In April, Redfin reported there was a staggering year-over-year decline in new listings of just over 50%. Now, however, both Redfin and Realtor.com have shared data from mid-May showing that annual stat has already shrunk to around 30%.
#2: Demand for homes – It’s no secret the real estate market relies heavily on supply and demand.
Thanks to states slowly opening back up for business, CNBC reported buyers have been “coming out in force,” wearing their masks for showings and ready to buy sooner than anticipated. Even in the first week of May, Redfin had noted its agents were experiencing demand that was 5.5% higher than even 2020’s pre-pandemic numbers. And just last week, mortgage applications rose 6% from the week before. Demand has also been fueled by the fact mortgage rates remain generously low, and many agents are doubling-down on using tech to show homes and close deals as needed.
#3: How long houses are sitting – As past trends would show, the longer a house takes to move, the more likely it may sell for less than its asking price.
Some sellers may find themselves waiting a bit longer to close a deal, as Realtor.com recently found properties in the 99 largest metros across the country have been on the market for an average of 13 extra days, compared to a year ago. And even though buyers have been coming back out of the woodwork, there’s still a decent amount of would-be homeowners waiting until it feels a little safer to make the commitment. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) did a survey where 40% of agents said their clients put their purchasing on pause for “a couple of months.
#4: Pricing – Although recent data has shown home prices are still 1.4% higher than a year ago,
Zillow has forecasted an overall dip of 2-3% by the end of 2020. While this may not be the news some people want to hear, to put this in perspective, we survived a much larger dip when the Great Recession dented home prices just over 27%. Plus, this is just one perspective. Fannie Mae has forecasted that the average existing-home price in 2020 will be $283,000, which is an overall growth of 4% compared to 2019.
#5: Job markets / unemployment rates
As with any other part of the economy, employment and financial stability influence the real estate market. As noted before, a decent segment of agents have reported their clients hitting the pause button on their home searches for a couple months. When it comes to those looking to sell, it really comes down to their personal situations. Some may want to stay put to avoid struggling to find their next abode, others may need the cash and/or want to shed having a monthly mortgage payment lingering over their head.
The market is still active. Your clients don’t have to sit on the sidelines while rates are at all-time lows. Contact me today to see how we can work together to help your clients match with a mortgage that meets their current needs, while supporting their goals for the future.
Bill Nickerson | Senior Loan Advisor | Flagstar Bank | Email | Bill’s Website
1500 District Avenue, Burlington MA | NMLS #4194