No Housing Collapse: The underlying housing fundamentals have stabilized significantly compared to last year’s slide.
For buyers or sellers wondering if there are any monsters lurking around the corner, they can be rest assured that the sky is not falling, there are no surprises on the housing front anytime soon. Reports from the housing trenches are that many buyers expect the market to drop like a rock and that is when they will finally be able to purchase. That simply is not on the horizon. Sitting back and waiting on the sidelines will prove to be a waste of time.
This year, from May to the start of August, the active inventory has remained unchanged, demand has only dropped by 2%, and the Expected Market Time increased by only 1%. Housing is not grinding to a halt. The sky is not falling. Typically for this time of the year, the Summer Market, the active inventory rises, demand drops slightly, and the Expected Market time slowly increases. This year, there has not been much change at all.
It is time for everybody’s expectations to be adjusted. The market is not as hot as before. Housing is not sliding into the abyss. Property values are not skyrocketing right now, but they are not falling either. Local real estate is not changing that much; what you see is what you get. Low mortgage rates have saved the day and they are not going anywhere. Instead, they are on the decline, reaching three-year lows. These low rates will cushion the market from stalling.
The bottom line: while housing is not as robust today as prior years, it is not spiraling out of control and will not result in a housing downturn anytime soon. The sky is not falling.
From now through the end of the year, the active listing inventory will slowly drop, and will pick up speed during the holidays when fewer homes come on the market and many unsuccessful sellers pull their homes off the market.