It is getting harder to predict the future

In June :

New data from the U.S. Census shows that:

  • 12% of mortgage holder households did not make their mortgage payment on time; 41% of them deferred their payment,
  • Among the owners who paid on time last month’s payment, 44% of them experienced a loss of employment income,
  • 31% of those who did not pay on time used the stimulus package but it was not enough to cover the cost,
  • 63% of the owners have high confidence in their ability to make next month’s payment while 21% have moderate confidence. However, the level of confidence is lower for Hispanics and African Americans. [source National Association of Realtors]

Here is a chart that shows national trends in how many home tours of homes for sale are happening. Predictably there was a dip in activity during the lockdown and then a jump as buyers and sellers started to come out of quarantine.

I recently read that a “v” shaped recovery has happened in the housing market and I disagree. There was a kind of pause in the housing market, a very short one, and then activity kind of sped up to make up for it.

The long term implications of this recession and pandemic on the housing market are currently unknown. The double-digit unemployment rates we are currently seeing will have an impact on the housing market.

showingtime graph
graph of home tours

Showingtime is the software most local real estate companies use to schedule tours of homes for sale.

The REALTOR associations tend to give us a lot of positive information. I think our whole system of capitalism depends upon people being optimistic so that they will keep working.

No one really knows what the long term impact of halting commerce for a few months will be or how the pandemic will change our economy.

In the short term people are buying houses like crazy while at the same time there are a lot of homeowners are hanging on and the number of homes on the market is down about 30% nationwide and in the metro area too. 

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