National Housing Survey

Home Purchase Sentiment Index Caps Off Strong 2019 Near Its Survey High

HPSI’s Strength Supportive of Upgraded Housing Forecast for 2020

December 2019

WASHINGTON, DC – The Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index® (HPSI) remained mostly flat in December, increasing 0.2 points to 91.7 and inching nearer the survey high set in August. Three of the six HPSI components increased month over month, including the percentage of Americans who believe that home prices will go up over the next 12 months, which rose from 44% to 50%. Year over year, the HPSI is up 8.2 points, driven primarily by consumers’ favorable mortgage rate expectations and a growing share reporting it’s a good time to buy a home.

During much of 2019 consumers reported being held back by high home prices and the shortage of houses available for purchase. However, partly in response to evidence from the HPSI demonstrating strong consumer sentiment, Fannie Mae’s most recent macroeconomic outlook incorporated upgrades to the 2020 forecasts for single-family housing starts, new home sales, and mortgage originations.

“The continued strength in the HPSI attests to the intention among consumers to purchase homes. This is consistent with the Fannie Mae forecast for 2020,” said Doug Duncan, Senior Vice President and Chief Economist. “The HPSI hit and remained near an all-time high in 2019, driven by the 16-percentage point year-over-year increase in the share of consumers believing it is a good time to buy. The HPSI’s strength supports our prediction of a healthy housing market in 2020, as well as consumers’ appetite and ability to absorb the expected increase in entry-level inventory.”

On this webpage you will find a news release with highlights from the HPSI and NHS results, the latest Data Release highlighting the consumer attitudinal indicators, month-over-month key indicator data, an overview and white paper about the HPSI, technical notes providing in-depth information about the NHS methodology, the questionnaire used for the survey, and a comparative assessment of Fannie Mae’s National Housing Survey and other consumer surveys.

Downloads and Related Links

News Release
December 2019 National Housing Survey Data Release  

National Housing Survey Monthly Indicators Archive
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Opinions, analyses, estimates, forecasts, and other views of Fannie Mae's Economic & Strategic Research (ESR) group or survey respondents included in these materials should not be construed as indicating Fannie Mae's business prospects or expected results, are based on a number of assumptions, and are subject to change without notice. How this information affects Fannie Mae will depend on many factors. Although the ESR group bases its opinions, analyses, estimates, forecasts, and other views on information it considers reliable, it does not guarantee that the information provided in these materials is accurate, current, or suitable for any particular purpose. Changes in the assumptions or the information underlying these views could produce materially different results. The analyses, opinions, estimates, forecasts, and other views published by the ESR group represent the views of that group or survey respondents as of the date indicated and do not necessarily represent the views of Fannie Mae or its management.