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National Housing Survey/Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI)

Overall Housing Confidence Up as Rising Home Prices Influence Increasingly Divergent Home Buying and Selling Sentiment

September 7, 2017

The Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index® (HPSI) increased 1.2 points in August to 88.0, just below the all-time high set in June. The rise can be attributed primarily to increases in two of the six HPSI components: the good time to sell component and the mortgage rates expectations component. The net share who reported that now is a good time to sell a home rose 8 percentage points in August and is now up 21 percentage points compared to the same period last year. Meanwhile, the net share who said it’s a good time to buy fell 5 percentage points in July and is down 16 percentage points year-over-year. Respondents continue to cite high home prices as the most important reason behind the bad time to buy and good time to sell indicators. The net share of those who believe mortgage rates will go down increased 4 percentage points, while the net share of Americans who believe home prices will go up increased 1 percentage point. Americans also expressed a reduced sense of job security, with the net share who say they are not concerned about losing their job falling 1 percentage point. Finally, the share of consumers who reported that their income is significantly higher than it was 12 months ago remains unchanged.

“In the early stages of the economic expansion, home selling sentiment trailed home buying sentiment by a significant margin. The reverse is true today,” said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. “he net good time to sell share is now double the net good time to buy share, with record high percentages of consumers citing home prices as the primary reason for both perceptions. Such a sizable gap between selling and buying sentiment, if it persists, could weigh on the housing market through the rest of the year.”

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
August 2017 National Housing Survey Data Release (PDF)