Kelly Leighton

Last Updated: February 13, 2018 | View all posts by Kelly Leighton

Despite lagging inventory and higher home prices, consumers are still feeling confident about today’s market, according to NAR’s 2017 Q4 Homeownership Opportunities and Market Experience Survey.

Seventy-two percent of consumers believe now is a good time to buy a home, with 43 percent feeling ‘strongly’ about it.

Those under 34 years old were most likely to feel that now is not a good time to buy a home, while those 65 and older were more confident it is. Of people residing in the Northeast, 69 percent reported that it is a good time to buy a home. Consumers living in suburban areas were more likely to believe now is a good time to buy a home, compared to those who live in urban areas.

Seventy-one percent of respondents believe now is a good time to sell a home, with 43 percent feeling ‘strongly’ about it. Just like buying, consumers 65 and older were more likely to believe now is a good time to sell, while those under 34 were least confident. In the Northeast, only 63 percent of respondents said now is a good time to sell, the lowest of any region. Those in suburban areas were most likely to report that now is a good time to tell, compared to those in rural areas.

“The good news for possible inventory gains heading into 2018 is the fact that a much larger share of homeowners compared to a year ago think it’s a good time to sell,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun.

Nearly two-thirds believe that home prices have risen in their areas, while 30 percent believe prices have remained consistent and 6 percent believe prices have decreased. Fifty-two percent think prices will increase, while 43 percent think they will remain the same and 6 percent believe they will decrease. However, paying for a house may be an issue. Sixty percent said they think it would be either very or somewhat difficult to qualify for a mortgage.

Only 52 percent of respondents feel the economy is improving, a decrease of 5 percent from the previous quarter.