Consumer confidence in housing market matches June’s all-time high

by Kelly McCabe

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The Fannie Mae Home Purchase Index rose 0.3 points in September to 88.3, matching June’s sentiment, which is the index’s all-time high.

Not only do a record number of people think now is a good time to buy, but 38 percent say now is a good time to sell — just 1 percentage point less than the survey’s high. Twenty-three percent of renters think now is a good time to buy, up 2 percentage points from August, according to Fannie Mae.

Renter respondents in the index cite home price as the main factor in whether they think now is a good time to buy, with the number of people who think home prices will increase in the next 12 months dropping 8 percentage points to 40 percent.

“The biggest driver for the increase in the HPSI is the rebound in the good time to buy sentiment, which outweighed the largest drag — a sizable reduction in the net share of consumers expecting home prices to rise over the next year,” said Doug Duncan, senior vice president and chief economist at Fannie Mae. “Additionally, perceptions of easing inventory helped boost the net share saying that now is a good time to buy, which is consistent with less bullish home price appreciation sentiment during the month.”

Duncan added that Fannie Mae expects this optimism to be hampered by the long-lasting physical effects of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.