RSS From Economist Mark Flemming

  • This Time it’s Different – Why a Wave of Foreclosures is Unlikely August 10, 2020
    Following the rapid contraction in U.S. economic activity as a result of the outbreak of COVID-19, the unemployment rate spiked to 14.4 percent in April and remained elevated in May (13.0 percent), setting the mark for the two highest recorded rates in the post-World War II era. Despite the federal foreclosure moratorium, there were fears […]
    Odeta Kushi
  • Interview with Yahoo! Finance: Impact of COVID-19 on the Summer Housing Market July 30, 2020
    First American Chief Economist Mark Fleming was interviewed on Yahoo! Finance earlier this month, discussing the impact of COVID-19 on the housing market and mortgage rates dropping below 3 percent for the first time ever.
  • What the Historic Mortgage Rate Drop Means for Affordability July 27, 2020
    As the coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc on global and domestic economies, housing has thus far proven resilient, managing a V-shaped recovery from the low point reached in April. The strong rebound is largely a result of two dynamics that existed before the pandemic and have continued or even gained strength in the last […]
    Mark Fleming
  • Will Household Formation Continue to Boost Housing Market Potential Amid the Pandemic? July 16, 2020
    The domestic and global economy continue to feel the pain inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic. Yet the housing industry, at least for now, is bucking the trend. Weekly purchase applications have surpassed their levels from one year ago for eight straight weeks, as potential buyers respond to record low mortgage rates. The market potential for […]
    Mark Fleming
  • Pandemic Unlikely to Slow Looming Wave of Millennial Marriages and Corresponding Increase in Potential Homeownership Demand in the Long Run July 15, 2020
    Millennials are already the most educated generational cohort in U.S. history, which bodes well for future homeownership demand. But they are also aging into key lifestyle decisions, like marriage and having children, associated with a greater likelihood of purchasing a home. According to our analysis of anonymized household data, millennials largely get married after the […]
    Odeta Kushi
  • Rising Millennial Educational Attainment Signals Homeownership Demand Primed for Growth July 9, 2020
    Examining critical lifestyle, societal and economic trends can provide a strong indication of the likelihood of owning a home and, in turn, potential homeownership demand. This is the fundamental concept behind our annual Homeownership Progress Index (HPRI). Understanding these forces and tracking how they change over time allows us to measure potential homeownership demand. According […]
    Odeta Kushi
  • Millennial Homeownership Delayed, But Not Denied July 1, 2020
    As we navigate the unprecedented impact of COVID-19, home has taken on added significance and there are signs that homeownership remains one of the main tenets of the American Dream. After hitting a bottom in the second week of April, mortgage applications to purchase a home increased for nine consecutive weeks, even exceeding levels from […]
    Mark Fleming
  • Will Low Mortgage Rates Prevent Decline in Affordability this Summer? June 30, 2020
    The economic fallout and impacts to the housing market from the pandemic appeared to peak in April. The number of existing-home sales fell 18 percent relative to March, housing starts fell 26 percent, and the supply of homes available for sale approached record lows. While historically low mortgage rates made it more affordable for those […]
    Mark Fleming
  • How Mortgage Rates Have Fueled Housing Market Potential Amid the Pandemic June 18, 2020
    The early signs of a housing market comeback that appeared in mid-April, rising weekly purchase loan applications, continued to surge through May and into June. In fact, weekly purchase loan applications have now exceeded pre-pandemic levels.
    Mark Fleming
  • For Single Women, Homeownership Increasingly Comes First June 11, 2020
    As we enter National Homeownership Month, it’s important to reflect on the long-term trends in one of the main tenets of the American Dream. Following an overall decline in homeownership in the aftermath of the Great Recession to a low point of 63 percent in 2016, the homeownership rate has rebounded significantly to 65 percent […]
    Odeta Kushi