We’ve seen some unexpected shifts this year as the prices started to dip and mortgage rates dropped to unexpected lows.
Matthew Gardner, Windermere’s chief economist gave his early prediction of a “balanced market,” something we hadn’t seen since the late 90’s. With the steep incline and declines we’ve seen in housing price over the last few years, he said that our area is going to need an adjustment period to this more balanced market. Looking at longer term averages, he estimated that home price would continue to grow but at a more modest pace. The result of this, as we’ve seen several analysts suggest, is that it is still a seller’s market but that its an optimal time to go into the home-buying process with a more thoughtful and deliberate approach. Here’s a quick look at what we can expect going forward:
Steady Buyer Activity
Low interest rates and our thriving economy has meant that buyers are still active in our market; homes are taking a bit longer to sell but selling, nonetheless. Despite inventory being up, we still have less than two months of available inventory, the result of which is still a busy buyer pool.
Home Prices will See Slow but Steady Growth
We are still seeing lower prices compared to last year’s averages in our region but according to Gardner, prices have not wavered since May. Last March prices jumped 7% over 2017 and this year the jump was 3.7% annually – so we can still see growth, it’s just a bit slower than we’ve been used to. Experts predict fixed-rate mortgages will close out the year between 3.9% and 4.1%, still considerably lower than last year’s.
Mortgage Rates Will Stay Low
According to Freddie Mac, mortgage rates hit their lowest since late 2016 with an average of 3.80%. Chief economist for Fannie Mae explains, “the fed has moved to a bias toward easing, as global economic activity has slowed. Interest rates have fallen as a result and could move lower if the Fed acts to lower rates as insurance for economic growth.”