The State of America’s Housing Market

More than 80% of Americans view housing as critical to the nation’s economic recovery, and nearly 70% feel that a presidential candidate’s position on housing will be an important consideration in the voting booth.(1)  Whether you’re thinking of buying, selling or are actively involved in the market, the statistics below will give you a clearer perspective of the state of the market.

Current National Trends in Housing–70% of Americans view owning a home as part of the American dream.(2)–62% of consumers feel that buying a home in the current market is a good investment over the next 10 years.(3)–$190,000:Median home price.(4) up from $170,000 the previous year.(5)  $155,000:Median home price of first-time buyers.(4) $219,500:Median home price of repeat buyers.(4)

Buyer Overview Buyers searched for a median of 12 weeks and visited 12 homes before they found the one they purchased.(4)–27% of homebuyers, including 60% of first-time homebuyers, said that the desire to own a home of their own was the biggest reason they bought.(4)–First time homebuyers comprise 37% of the market.(4)–64% of all buyers are married couples, 18% are single women, 10% are single men and 7% are unmarried couples.(4)–$80,900: The median household income of homebuyers.(4)–84% of buyers purchased a previously-owned home and 16% purchased a new home.(4)

Seller Overview–35% of homes were on the market less than 2 months before they sold.(6)–The average time a home was on the market was 9 weeks.(4)–66% of sellers were first-time sellers.(4)–39% of sellers did not reduce the asking price, 26% of sellers reduced it once and 35% reduced the price two or more times.(4)

Financing the Home Purhcase–The average rent on vacant properties is 28% higher than the average mortgage payment.(7)–The estimated median monthly mortgage principal and interest payment of a first-time homebuyer was $794.4–The estimated median monthly mortgage principal and interest payment of a repeat buyer was $1,006.8–94% of buyers financed their home purchase, including 96% of 25-44 year olds, 82% of 45-64 year olds, 66% of buyers 65 and older.(4) –35% of buyers had a down payment of 20% or more.(4)–74% of consumers who plan to buy a home in the next 12 months will use their personal savings for a down payment.(3)–The average buyer financed 89% of the home purchase.(4)–94% of first-time homebuyers chose a fixed-rate mortgage.4–54% of first-time homebuyers used a low down payment FHA mortgage.(4)–Mortgage rates are expected to rise and reach 4.5% by mid-2012.(3)

Sources:(1) Move Inc., (2) Wall Stee Journal, October 4, 2011, (3) Bank of America Mortgage Index Study, December 8, 2011 (4) National Association of Realtors Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers 2011, (5) National Association of Realtors  Profile of  Home Buyers and Sellers 2010, (6) National Association of Realtors, (7) Forbes, November 14, 2011.