Buying a home can be an emotional affair. For many first-time buyers, it is the culmination of a dream. Others may be leaving behind years of memories to start fresh in a new location that is far from friends and family. Even when feelings are not involved, the procedure can be quite trying. Transactions take a long time, and there are mounds of documents that need signatures.
However, particular market conditions make the process a bit easier. The National Association of Realtors recently completed its Homeownership Opportunities and Market Experience (HOME) Survey, which gauges consumer confidence in real estate. The NAR found that in Q1 2019, both buyers and sellers felt pretty good.
Were Consumer Feelings Hurt?
It has been more than ten years since the Great Recession ripped through the nation’s housing market. The damage to consumer confidence was severe, but, as the NAR discovered, only temporary. According to the HOME survey, 65% of Americans believe that it is a good time to purchase a home, an increase over Q4 2018. Only 35% disagree.
American Sellers Are Confident
Sellers are also confident. Per the NAR, 69% of Americans believe it is a good time to sell a home. It represents the lowest percentage since Q4 2017, which may mean that sellers are fastening their seatbelts in anticipation of another bump in home values.
Prices have been rising, and many believe that the trend can continue. According to the HOME survey, more than 50% of Americans feel like the economy is still on the upswing. Unemployment is low. Additionally, a new cohort of buyers is beginning to emerge.
Millennials Are Buying Homes and Introducing New Tech
Long presumed to be comfortable living with their parents or roommates, millennials are now shopping for homes of their own. After surpassing Gen Xers as America’s top source of mortgages in 2017, millennials represent nearly half the country’s home loans.
Millennials are also introducing new technology that should make buying less stressful for everybody – even when market conditions are not optimal. They have already simplified the purchase process by popularizing mobile mortgage apps, on-demand showings, and virtual reality home tours.
Millennials’ entry into the market may buoy consumer confidence. More importantly, however, the tech they bring online will make buying or selling a home a less trying experience. Blockchain tech adoption is sure to follow.