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Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Two Key Housing Themes: Low Inventory and Few Distressed Sales

by Calculated Risk on 5/24/2023 09:43:00 AM

Today, in the Calculated Risk Real Estate Newsletter: Two Key Housing Themes: Low Inventory and Few Distressed Sales

Brief excerpt:

Every housing cycle is different. One of the key themes in this cycle is that existing home inventory is historically extremely low as many homeowners are “locked in” to their current home with low mortgage rates.

Another key theme is that there will be few distressed sales as most homeowners have substantial equity.

Here is some data on outstanding mortgage rates and current loan-to-values.

Percent First Lien Mortgage by Interest RateHere is some data from the FHFA’s National Mortgage Database showing the distribution of interest rates on closed-end, fixed-rate 1-4 family mortgages outstanding at the end of each quarter since Q1 2013 through Q4 2022.

This shows the recent surge in the percent of loans under 3%, and also under 4%, starting in early 2020 as mortgage rates declined sharply during the pandemic. The percent of outstanding loans under 4% peaked in Q1 2022 at 65.4%, and the percent under 5% peaked at 85.8%. These low existing mortgage rates makes it difficult for homeowners to sell their homes and buy a new home since their monthly payments would increase sharply. This is a key reason existing home inventory levels are very low.
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