Homeowners feeling more confident in the economy, ready to sell

by Rincey Abraham

As home prices continue to rise across the country, homeowners appear ready to sell their homes. A record 77 percent of Americans believe that now is a good time to sell their home, according to the National Association of Realtors’ third quarter Housing Opportunities and Market Experience (HOME) survey.

Half of Americans strongly believe now is a good time to sell, up from 46 percent in Q2, and 27 percent moderately believe it is the right time to sell. The number of people who believe now is not a good time to sell is down from 29 percent last quarter to 22 percent in Q3.

The main reason behind this growth in seller confidence has to do with rising home prices. The majority of consumers think that prices have and will continue to rise. In fact, 70 percent believe that home prices have gone up in their neighborhoods in the past year, up from 68 percent last quarter. Another 53 percent believe that home prices will continue to rise over the next six months.

“Though the vast majority of consumers believe home prices will continue to increase or hold steady, they understand the days of easy, fast gains could be coming to an end,” NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun said. “Therefore, more are indicating that it is a good time to sell, which is a healthy shift in the market.”

However, rising home prices mean the optimism around buying has decreased. Down from 68 percent last quarter, 63 percent of those surveyed either strongly or moderately believe that now is a good time to buy a home. Additionally, only 45 percent of renters now think it is a good time to buy a home, which is down from 49 percent last quarter.

Other findings from the report:

  • Almost hitting a record high, 60 percent of households believe the economy is improving.
  • Survey responders’ confidence that their personal finance situation will be better in six months rose slightly.
  • More than two-thirds of homeowners and non-homeowners believe that highly rated schools an important part of the home buying process.
  • A quarter of respondents ranked proximity to family and friends as most important when buying a home, followed by 24 percent listing a short commute.