National Housing Survey/Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI)

Home Purchase Sentiment Hits Plateau as High Home Prices Stymie Trade-Up Confidence

August 7, 2018

The Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index® (HPSI) fell in July for the second consecutive month, dropping 4.2 points to 86.5, after reaching survey highs in April and May. The decline can be attributed to decreases in four of the six HPSI components. The net share of survey respondents who said now is a good time to buy a home fell 4 percentage points, and the net share who said it is a good time to sell a home fell 6 percentage points. Additionally, the net share who said that home prices will go up in the next 12 months decreased 7 percentage points. More Americans also expressed a decreased sense of job security, with the net share who said they are not concerned about losing their job falling 11 percentage points in July.

“Home purchase sentiment seems to have reached a plateau, with potential home sellers likely struggling to find a home to buy amid slow supply growth, expectations for rising mortgage rates, and significant home price increases,” said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. “Survey respondents cite ‘high home prices’ as the top reason why it is both a good time to sell a home and bad time to buy a home. This suggests a contributing factor to the low supply of existing homes for sale is that current owners are reluctant to trade up in a rising price market. Additionally, the shares of consumers citing favorable mortgage rates as a reason why it’s a good time to buy or sell a home both dropped to fresh survey lows.”

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
July 2018 National Housing Survey Data Release (PDF)