Housing Market Outlook for Q3 and Q4 2020

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With the Coronavirus pandemic in full swing and stay-at-home orders currently in place throughout the nation, the question on everyone’s mind is, “What will the housing market look like for the remainder of 2020?”

According to NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun, “After a pause, home sellers are gearing up to list their properties with the reopening of the economy…Plenty of buyers also appear ready to take advantage of record-low mortgage rates and the stability that comes with these locked-in monthly payments into future years.”

The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR), America’s largest trade association representing more than 1.4 million REALTORS®, recently conducted a flash survey from May 3-4, 2020 to gauge the economic pulse of the real estate market. The findings from the 2020 NAR Flash Survey were as follows:

  • Buyer Behavior – 42% reported buyers are delaying their home purchase for a couple of months and 17% stopped looking altogether due to concerns of job loss.
  • Buyer Expectations – 59% believe buyers are expecting a decline in home prices.
  • Neighborhood Preferences and Search Criteria remain the same
  • Seller Behavior – Similar to buyer behavior, 51% of NAR members reported sellers are delaying their home sale for a couple of months while 17% are continuing the sales process relying on virtual communication.
  • Listing Price – 73% reported that no sellers have reduced the price to attract buyers.

Indications are that sellers are delaying their home sales by several months until stay-at-home orders are lifted. As many large states saw increased activity last week, so did the Mortgage Bankers Association, reporting an 11% increase in mortgage applications from buyers. Additionally, this week Zillow reported “The number of new for-sale listings overall has shown improvement, up 5.9% last week from the previous week. New listings of the most-expensive homes…are now seeing the biggest resurgence, up 8%. The uptick is likely a sign sellers are feeling more confident because of improving buyer demand, as newly pending sales have also jumped up during the same period.”

Based on this recent data, it looks like Q3 and Q4 will be a busy one for both buyers and sellers.