AgentMarkets & Economy

NAR’s 2017 midyear forecast: Will homeownership rebound?

Robust job gains and growing household confidence to propel existing-home sales, but homeownership will be hampered by inventory, affordability
  • National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun presented his midyear forecast at the 2017 Realtors Legislative Meetings and Trade Expo.
  • Yun says the future success of the housing market heavily depends upon housing starts, which need to be at 1.5 million to fulfill buyer demand.

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National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun presented his midyear forecast at the 2017 Realtors Legislative Meetings and Trade Expo. Yun predicted that a multi-year stretch of robust job gains paired with growing household confidence will bring existing-home sales to a decade high, but low inventory, the lack of affordable housing and modest economic growth are keeping homeownership rates at historic lows. The 2017 Q1 existing-home sales pace (5.62 million) is the best in a decade, and Yun says he expects for the year to end with 5.64 million existing-home sales -- a 3.5 percent year-over-year gain and the best sales pace since 2006 (6.47 million). Moreover, Yun expects the national median existing-home price to climb 5 percentage points over the next year. Housing starts to get a lift, but it won't be enough “The housing market has exceeded expectations ever since the election, despite depressed inventory and higher mortgage rates,” said Yun at th...