Dr. Jessica Lautz is the Deputy Chief Economist and Vice President of Research at the National Association of REALTORS®. In this episode, she is going to share national data with us from NAR and discuss what she sees coming in the future. All of our crystal balls may be broken, but there are definitely patterns that can be seen. The core of Jessica's research focuses on analyzing trends for both NAR members and housing consumers. Through the management of surveys, focus groups, and data analysis, she presents new and innovative ways to showcase results. Let's see what she will teach us in this episode!
[2:46] Jessica thinks we're in a moment of transition when existing home sales data show 12 months of decline but the decline seems to be getting smaller.
[4:24] Our current sales numbers are lower than in 2019, before the pandemic. They are more in line with 2014 sales numbers.
[6:51] The typical homeowner has been in their home for 10 years and has $210,000 in home equity.
[7:14] In some scenarios, not only investors but a large share of primary residence repeat buyers are paying all cash for a home, because of the housing equity they have.
[9:34] Home mortgage interest rates had gone down for several weeks continually before going back up to 6.3% from 6.1%.
[10:53] Jessica says to pay attention to what happens after the Fed meets. NAR tracks interest rates and puts out a statement every Thursday on social media.
[12:30] Jessica explains the indirect effect that the Fed raising interest rates may have on mortgage loan interest rates.
[13:41] Jessica hopes that existing home sales in spring will be stronger than it was in the previous two months. She is starting to see early signs of it.
[15:52] Jessica breaks down corporate investors. We know that they're present in the market, but has their share of the market gone up?
[16:41] The investors of 2022 pushed first-time homebuyers out of the market.
[18:18] In March of 2022 there were five-and-a-half offers for every home that was listed.
[19:02] Jessica discusses credit card debt, student loan debt, and daycare costs. How are first-time homebuyers going to save a down payment when they use their credit card to buy eggs and milk?
[22:01] Jessica believes that awareness of low-down-payment programs in communities is low. Putting that information out there for potential buyers is incredibly important.
[25:15] Jessica discusses the aging population and the housing market. In the next three years, every Baby Boomer will be over the age of 60.
[26:36] Retirees are looking for newer homes with bells and whistles where they can age in place.
[33:54] Jessica shares a few of her favorite data points.
[37:31] Jessica also shares that a lot of first-time homebuyers are trying to get out of their parents' homes and move into home ownership.
[38:08] Jessica shares her links for NAR Research at NAR.realtor. You can also subscribe and share infographic posts from NAR Research on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
"We released our existing home sales data and it showed a continual decline — 12 months of decline — but it seems like the decline is getting smaller. … [It] is not necessarily a normal spring market; … interest rates are still high, but a more normal spring market." — Jessica
"Buyers are coming back. They understand now that rates are higher but they may actually have an opportunity in the market, especially first-time homebuyers." — Jessica
"It's also your long-term future. It's also the long-term savings and the gains that you have in home ownership that you don't have as a renter." — Jessica
"Only 26% of the market was first-time homebuyers last year. In a healthy market, it would be 40%. So we really lost first-time homebuyers last year." — Jessica
About Jessica Lautz
Dr. Jessica Lautz is the Deputy Chief Economist and Vice President of Research at the National Association of REALTORS®. In 2021, Dr. Lautz was named one of Housing Wire's Women of Influence, a list representing 100 of the most influential women in leadership in the housing industry. In 2022 and 2023, Dr. Lautz was named RIS Media Newsmaker in My Influencer and Crusader categories, respectively.
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