Will The Housing Market Recover In 2024?
The housing market in 2024 is not likely to experience a fast recovery. Mortgage rates remain high, along with low inventory and higher home prices, which results in many buyers being iced out of the market and making it more difficult for sellers to get their homes sold. However, it’s not all doom and gloom as rates have begun to cool off, and if this continues, it could lead to a busier housing market in 2024.
Ultimately, the performance of the housing market in 2024 hinges on the Fed’s interest rate changes and housing inventory, as changes to these factors will have a domino effect on the rest of the market. Based on the Federal Reserve’s latest economic projections released in December, economists anticipate that inflation will not consistently retreat to 2.0% until 2026. This expectation suggests the possibility of higher short-term interest rates in the next two years, albeit with a declining trend, which will impact mortgage rates positively for buyers.
Will Home Sales Increase Or Decrease In 2024?
The best outcome for 2024 would be an increase in home inventory, to increase home sales and drive down home prices. The trick is to find a balance with falling house prices, so that inventory doesn’t get bought too quickly. Most experts predict that competition for houses remains resilient despite mortgage interest rates, and that provided mortgage rates decline, more buyers and sellers can enter the market in 2024.
“I don’t expect to see a meaningful increase in the supply of existing homes for sale until mortgage rates are back down in the low 5% range, so probably not in 2024,” says Rick Sharga, founder and CEO of CJ Patrick Company, a market intelligence and business advisory firm. Many other experts echo this sentiment, such as Chen Zhao, who leads the economics team at Redfin, who has forecasted that existing home sales will stay somewhat stable, without a drastic increase.
The general consensus among the experts seems to be that if mortgage rates continue to dip, existing home sales could swing upwards from their downward trend. This would lead to a potential small increase in home sales this year, however nothing major is expected in that regard.
What Is Going To Happen To Mortgage Rates This Year?
First, let’s take a look at interest rates, as mortgage rates are closely tied to these. Many existing homeowners have been hanging onto their homes as they secured lower interest rates during the pandemic. In October 2023, existing home sales were down by 15% year on year, but experts think that 2024 could be the year to change this and many are encouraging people to buy again as the interest rate averages 7% for a 30-year fixed mortgage at the time of writing.
Mortgage rates remain higher so far this year, but they could experience a quick decline if a sharp economic slowdown occurs. Greg Mcbride, Bankrate Chief Financial Analyst said, “As long as the economy continues to motor along, the new normal of higher rates is here to stay.”
Kuba Jewgieniew, CEO of Realty ONE Group, a real estate brokerage company, predicts that
Which means that it’s likely that mortgage rates will follow suit, once this occurs. Fannie Mae’s predictions fall somewhat in line with this, stating that mortgage rates are likely to fall to 6.7% in 2024 and down even further to 6.2% in 2025. This bodes well for the real estate market’s recovery in 2024.
Is The Housing Affordability Crisis Going To Get Worse?
Unfortunately, it seems as though home affordability challenges will be sticking around for a while longer in the US real estate market. In some markets, home prices will be declining and in others they may stay the same, or even increase more. The combination of high mortgage rates and a low inventory of homes means that many homebuyers are iced out of the market. If mortgage rates return to a 4-5% range in 2024, the experts believe that this would be a defining factor for housing market transformation. However, this may still be way off.
By the end of 2023, the median sale price for existing homes in the US was $387,600, which is an increase of 4%, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR). This concluded a 5-month streak of home prices increasing, and a rise above 8% for mortgage rates in October last year. In January 2024 however, mortgage rates began their decline, reaching levels below 7%. This has been a welcome reprieve for homeowners and home buyers who have been faced with 20-year mortgage rate highs in recent times.
The outlook for 2024 is a mixed bag, as home prices are likely to remain high, in fact, Zillow forecasts a 3.7% jump in home prices in 2024. According to the NAR, housing inventory was 3.5 months in November 2023, and this meant that it was a seller’s market. However, the experts agree that affordability is beginning to look more positive for those buying homes.
What Can We Learn From Housing Market Performance In 2023?
In Q3 of 2023, NAR reports that over 80% of US metros experienced home price growth, which continued the trend we’ve come to see for the last few years. According to Redfin, the US real estate market saw a record high for median home sale prices of $433,000 in 2023.
NAR’s First-Time Home Buyer Affordability Index was 61.9 for Q3 2023, which means that the average family did not bring in enough income to qualify for a mortgage. This, combined with 23-year highs for mortgage rates (over 8%), resulted in declining home sales across the board in 2023. An unaffordable housing market led to a slowdown in home purchases, and a lack of inventory didn’t help.
By the end of 2023, existing-home sales plummeted to 4.09 million which was a decline of 18.3% from the previous year, which was a 28-year low, according to the NAR. The good news is that home sales are likely to gradually recover this year with a potential decline in mortgage rates, however it certainly won’t be a sharp increase.
What’s noticeable however, is that the market did not crash, and instead made it through the year to come into 2024 with a more positive outlook, which suggests that the US economy is more resilient than expected. In addition, the GDP growth in the US was a strong 4.9% in Q3 of 2023. These are positive signs as we move deeper into 2024, even though housing inventory remains low.
Which Areas Are Likely To Thrive This Year?
Southern California has 5 of the top 10 metros for 2024 and is showing an average sales growth of 13.1% according to Realtor.com. These are Oxnard, San Diego, Riverside, Bakersfield and Los Angeles.
While the state may not have the most affordable market, there are a host of cities in the southern areas which are expected to see an average sales growth of 13.1%, according to a Realtor.com report. The report also outlines that government-backed mortgages, such as FHA loans, are likely to play a big role in helping buyers in this area.
Toledo is ranked as one of the top cities to invest in real estate in 2024, based on a number of factors, according to Realtor.com. The first is that the city is expected to see a 14% increase in home sales in 2024. The next factor is the median sale price of existing homes, which is forecasted to rise by 8.3% year-over-year.
According to Zillow, the average value of a home in Toledo is $113,033, which is an increase of 5.6% over the last year. This increase is forecasted to continue, driving Toledo to the top of the rankings for real estate markets that will thrive in 2024.
Rochester, NY has been on the list of best places to invest in real estate before, and for 2024 we see it again, according to Realtor.com. This is largely due to a 6.2% increase in home sales prediction for 2024, along with an expected 10.4% rise in existing home sale prices. Rochester has experienced a low inventory of houses over the last few years, however even so, the area remains more affordable for buyers compared to many other places in the country.
While this may be an unusual area to feature, Springfield has been voted in the top 10 for best real estate markets in 2024 by Realtor.com. So far in January, homes are selling for 6.6% more than they were a year ago, according to Rocket Homes. Realtor.com expects home sales to increase by 9%, while the median listing price remains well below the Boston metro area prices. The region has a diverse economy and strong educational institutions are said to add to the area’s appeal and draw more buyers to the area.
Rio Grande, TX
Home values in the Rio Grande are expected to rise by 12.3% which would bring the average home price up from $113,368 in July 2023 to an estimated $127,312 in July 2024, according to Norada Real Estate Investments. In December, Redfin data shows that Rio Grande’s home prices were up by 6.4% year-on-year, and homes were selling for a median price of $149,000. The number of days on the market had decreased significantly as well, year-on-year, showing the city’s growing positive outlook for the future.
CoreLogic has outlined Redding, CA as one of the most likely cities to experience an increase in home prices. CoreLogic has predicted that home prices in Redding could rise as much as 7.3% in fact, making this city the highest for price gains in 2024. Compared to other cities in CA, Redding is more affordable, with the median sales price sitting at $400,000, according to Redfin. Large companies like Amazon and Facebook have recently moved into the area, which is a big attraction and boost the demand for housing in the area.
Which Metros Are Likely To Experience A Downturn?
Cape Coral, FL
CoreLogic forecasts a 70% likelihood of home price declines in 2024 in Cape Coral and Ft Myers. The median sold price of homes in Cape Coral was $399,858 in January, which was a decline of 3.7% year-on-year, according to Rocket Homes. The housing supply in Cape Coral was up by 17.3% over December 2023 and January 2024, as Rocket Homes reports, which is likely to lead to further house price decreases.
New Orleans, LA
Zillow forecasts New Orleans to experience a significant decline in home prices in 2024, in fact this decline has already begun. Data from Redfin shows that in December 2023, home prices had already decreased by 10% in comparison to 2022. Homes are spending 93 days on the market, on average, in New Orleans, which is 43 days more than the previous year as well.
As of January 2024, the typical value of homes in New Orleans was down by 8% year-on-year, according to Zillow, and the average home value in the city is now $244,755. These trends indicate a market downturn as that home prices are declining drastically, while homes are taking even longer to sell.
San Francisco, CA
Zillow’s forecasts indicate the beautiful bay city of San Francisco, is expected to see a decline in home prices in 2024. The notoriously expensive and competitive housing market in this city is still not considered a buyer’s market, and Zillow predicts that this year San Francisco will see a 4.8% decrease in home prices. Insurance prices are impacting the real estate market in the city as well, as several large insurance companies are no longer offering their services in California last year, which means that homeowners have limited options.
San Jose, CA
According to Zillow, the average home values in the San Jose metro area are projected to decrease from $1.46 million in November 2023 to $1.37 million in November 2024. The major layoffs that occurred in the city last year from a number of companies, and the higher interest rates have led to a few knocks for the city’s real estate market and this year consumer sentiment is still low.
Zillow places San Jose in the top, for cities with declining home prices. In fact, the platform predicts that home prices will drop by 6.1% over the year 2024. These predictions hinge largely on buyer sentiment which will either lead buyers to continue looking for affordable options in the area, or venture to other areas nearby.
Are There Any Signs That The Market Will Crash?
In terms of the housing market predictions 2024, a housing market crash is very unlikely. With mortgage interest rates hitting highs and home price growth slowing in 2023, talk of a housing market crash began to circulate. However, based on the expert predictions and the current market trends outlined above, mortgage rates may begin to decline, along with interest rates in 2024. Which means that the conditions for a market crash are not likely to be met, and the opposite is more likely to occur.
Final Tips For Investing In The US Housing Market In 2024
Investing in an ever-changing real estate market can be a challenge, but there’s always risk with rewards. A few key tips to bear in mind based on the US housing market predictions 2024:
- Keep up to date: The market trends change often, so it’s important to stay on top of these changes, so that you can make informed investing decisions. Knowing which areas are likely to be on the upswing in 2024 is a key element to investing in the most profitable way.
- Diversify your portfolio: Spread your investments across different types of properties and locations to minimize risk.
- Adapt your strategy: You’ll need to be flexible, especially when it comes to changing interest rates. An adaptable strategy is the best way to survive an unpredictable market. This means planning for changes and being able to pivot quickly when they inevitably occur.
- Leverage technology: Use the latest tools and platforms to streamline your investment process, from property search and analysis to financing and property management. Utilize data analytics to identify investment opportunities and optimize portfolio performance.
- Focus on valuable properties: Search for properties that have clear potential for appreciation and are likely to be profitable over the long term. Conduct thorough due diligence, including property inspections, market analysis, and financial projections, to ensure you’re getting value for your investment.