Double-dip recession concern by consumers is putting a damper on the housing market

Dennis Norman, St Louis REALTORFannie Mae’s Economics & Mortgage Market Analysis Group says that we are not out of the woods yet and that the economy is “flirting with another economic downturn” now after more than two years since the worst recession since the World War II era. Fannie Mae Chief Economist, Doug Duncan, said “the weakening economic backdrop, a persistently high unemployment rate, and fear of a double-dip recession are casting a shadow over the housing market.”

The Fannie Mae National Housing Survey shows American’s continue to shift from wanting to own a home to renting a home instead. You can see this change of sentiment in the housing market as even though mortgage interest rates continue to bounce around record low levels, and homes are more affordable than they have been in a decade, but home sales dropped in the middle of summer and has been sluggish at best. In the meantime, vacancy rates continue to drop on rentals and, even though new home construction is at a record low rate, construction of new multifamily buildings is on the rise.

Fannie Mae Housing Forecast – September 2011 – Highlights

  • New home starts for 2011 – 421,000, a decrease of 10.5 percent from 2010
  • New home sales for 2011 – 305,000, a decrease of 5.4 percent from 2010
  • Existing home sales for 2011 – 4,907,000 – same as 2010
  • Total home sales for the year (new and existing) – 5,212,000, a decrease of 0.4 percent from 2010
  • Median new home price for 2011 – $221,700 – the same as 2010
  • Median existing home price for 2011 – $166,000, a decrease of 4.1 percent from 2010

To listen tot he podcast by Fannie Mae Chief Economist, Doug Duncan, click here.

To see the complete Housing Forecast click here.

 

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