Are you putting off selling your house because you’re worried no one’s buying because of where mortgage rates are? If so, keep in mind: It’s important to know what you can expect in the current housing market. One positive trend right now is homebuyers are adapting to today’s mortgage rates and getting used to them as the new normal. Plus, the latest data shows plenty of buyers are still out there, and they’re purchasing homes today. Here’s the data to prove it.
The ShowingTime Showing Index is a measure of buyers touring homes. The graph below uses the latest numbers available and compares them to the same month in the last normal years to show just how active today’s buyers still are:
As you can see, when June 2023 numbers are stacked alongside what’s typical for the housing market at this time of year, it's clear buyers are still active. And, they’re actually a lot more active than the norm.
If you’re wondering how this could possibly be true, it’s because buyers are getting used to higher mortgage rates and accepting them as the new reality. As Danielle Hale, Chief Economist, Realtor.com, explains:
“Interest rate hikes continue to further cut into buyers' purchasing power, although they appear to have adapted to the higher mortgage rate environment . . .”
It’s simple. Buyers will always need to buy, and those who can afford to move at today’s rates are going to do so.
And to better understand what’s been happening with mortgage rates lately, the graph below shows the trend for the 30-year fixed mortgage rate from Freddie Mac since last October. As you can see, rates have been between 6% and 7% pretty consistently for the past nine months:
According to Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist at the National Association of Realtors (NAR), mortgage rates play a significant role in buyer demand and, by extension, home sales. Yun highlights the positive impact of stable rates:
“Mortgage rates heavily influence the direction of home sales. Relatively steady rates have led to several consecutive months of consistent home sales.”
As a seller, hearing that home sales are consistent right now is good news. It means buyers are out there and actively purchasing homes. Here’s a bit more context on how mortgage rates have impacted demand recently.
When mortgage rates surged dramatically last year, escalating from roughly 3% to 7%, many potential buyers felt a bit of sticker shock and decided to hold off on their plans to purchase a home. However, as time has passed, that initial shock has worn off. Buyers have grown more accustomed to current mortgage rates and have accepted that the record-low rates of the last few years are behind us. As Doug Duncan, SVP and Chief Economist at Fannie Mae, says:
“. . . consumers are adapting to the idea that higher mortgage rates will likely stick around for the foreseeable future.”
In fact, a recent survey by Freddie Mac reveals 18% of respondents say they’re likely to buy a home in the next six months. That means nearly one out of every five people surveyed plan to buy in the near future. And that goes to show buyers are planning to be active in the months ahead.
Of course, mortgage rates aren’t the sole factor affecting buyer demand. No matter where mortgage rates stand, people will always have reasons to move, whether it’s for job relocation, changing households, or any other personal motivation. As a seller, you can feel confident there is a market for your house today. And that demand is pretty strong as buyers settle into where rates are right now.
The Key Takeaway for You
While it’s true things have slowed down from the frenzy of the last couple of years, it doesn’t mean today’s market is at a standstill. The reality is: buyer traffic is still strong today. Even with today’s mortgage rates, plenty of buyers are still making their moves. So why delay your own move when there’s clearly a market for your house?
Don’t put off your plans because you’re worried no one will buy your home. The opposite is true, more buyers are more active than the norm and the way they perceive today’s mortgage rates is shifting – they’re getting used to the new normal. Steady rates are contributing to strong buyer demand and consistent home sales. Let’s connect to get your house ready to sell, so it makes the best first impression possible in front of those eager buyers.