National Housing Survey
High Home Prices Continue to Weigh on Homebuying Sentiment
Wide Disparity Exists Between Homebuying and Home-Selling Conditions, Consumers Report
October 7, 2021
The Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index® (HPSI) decreased 1.2 points to 74.5 in September, as survey respondents continued to report divergent opinions of homebuying and home-selling conditions. Overall, three of the index’s six components decreased month over month. Most notably, an even greater share of consumers reported that it’s a bad time to buy a home – with that number now sitting at 66 percent, up from 63 percent last month and significantly higher than the 28% of respondents who believe it’s a good time to buy. The home-selling conditions component remained mostly flat, with a strong majority of consumers maintaining that it’s a good time to sell. Year over year, the full index is down 6.5 points.
“The HPSI declined slightly this month but remains within the general bounds we’ve seen since the end of last year,” said Doug Duncan, Fannie Mae Senior Vice President and Chief Economist. “The survey’s story is also largely unchanged: Consumers feel it’s a bad time to buy a home but a good time to sell – and they continue to cite high home prices as the primary reason. Across all consumer segments, renters and younger consumers were slightly more likely to indicate it’s a bad time to buy, perhaps a reflection of their generally lower incomes and their observation that the availability of affordable homes is lacking. We’re also seeing a softening in consumers’ expectations that home prices will continue to increase; however, in our view, other housing market fundamentals remain supportive of further home price appreciation – including low levels of inventory and low interest rates.”
On the right rail of this webpage, you will find a news release with highlights from the HPSI and National Housing Survey 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 National Housing Survey methodology, the questionnaire used for the survey, and a comparative assessment of Fannie Mae’s National Housing Survey and other consumer surveys.
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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.