Earlier this year, about 45% of home sellers said they believed the housing market was headed for a crash. Doomsday fears seem to brew when consumers get nervous that the market may have overheated, especially when many remember the market crash of 2008. The country is still facing historically low inventory levels and low rental vacancy rates that are results of years of underproduction in new construction. But here are some facts that should calm those housing bubble fears.
- Mortgages are structured much differently today. Instead of the many sub-prime lending tactics from the past, lenders are much more strict about who they lend to, with higher credit-score requirements and the ability to repay requirements.
- Housing inventories remain low. The nation is roughly 3 million homes short of meeting buyer demand.
- Buyer demand remains high and homeownership still ranks above having a successful job or even marriage.
- Real estate can be a hedge against inflation. A fixed-rate mortgage locks in a homeowner’s monthly mortgage payment and keeps it steady against any future rate hikes. And homeowners stand to gain over the long run. Those who hold onto their home for at least 10 years have a 93% chance of selling for more than what they originally paid.
- A market correction is not the same as a “crash.” Some markets may experience a slight decrease in home prices as the market readjusts from recent, rapid record highs.
Basically, a purchase in real estate is a safe investment and interest rates are normalizing to where they “should” have been for many years. While there are now more homes coming onto the market, buyers should take this opportunity to use bargaining power with sellers to get the home of their dreams. We all know the market will “shift” again in time.