RSS From Economist Mark Flemming

  • The Unexpected Surprise Boosting Demand and Supply in 2019 June 18, 2019
    In late 2018, many experts believed the housing market in 2019 would behave very similar to the 2018 housing market, characterized by rising demand for homes and limited supply driving house price appreciation, while mortgage rates continued their steady ascent. Then, December 2018 brought a sudden drop in mortgage rates, a decline which has persisted […]
    Mark Fleming
  • Top 10 Cities with the Largest Supply of Affordable Homes for First-Time Home Buyers June 13, 2019
    Faced with often misleading affordability metrics and seemingly challenging housing market dynamics, many renters may underestimate their house-buying power and the supply of homes in their market that they can afford. Potential first-time home buyers can benefit from a more targeted examination of affordability, which begins by accurately tracking house-buying power for first-time home buyers.
    Odeta Kushi
  • Expect the Unexpected -- Faster House Price Appreciation June 6, 2019
    In our most recent Potential Home Sales Model analysis, we noted that the housing market’s potential improved in April because falling mortgage rates and rising household income combined to increase consumer house-buying power more than enough than to offset house price appreciation. In other words, house-buying power won the tug of war with house prices.
    Mark Fleming
  • How Lower Mortgage Rates Helped Reduce Defect Risk for the First Time in Eight Months May 31, 2019
    The frequency of defects, fraudulence and misrepresentation in the information submitted in mortgage loan applications declined 4.2 percent compared to last month. Notably, this marks the first month-over-month decline since July 2018, thanks to lower mortgage rates. Decreasing mortgage rates contributed to an increase in inventory, reducing the competitive pressure on the housing market, as […]
    Mark Fleming
  • Why Did Affordability Improve for the First Time Since 2016? May 28, 2019
    What began as a modest shift toward a buyers’ market in six cities last month has expanded into a national shift in affordability. The shift is a departure from the long-term trend in the Real House Price Index (RHPI), which had been steadily increasing throughout the rising mortgage rate environment that began in 2017 and […]
    Mark Fleming
  • Interviews on Yahoo! Finance and Nightly Business Report: Discussing existing-home sales, the housing supply squeeze and the market forces helping affordability May 24, 2019
    First American Chief Economist Mark Fleming was interviewed on Yahoo! Finance and Deputy Chief Economist Odeta Kushi on Nightly Business Report earlier this week and discussed the existing-home sales data for April, the housing supply squeeze and the market forces helping affordability.
  • Interviews on FOXBusiness and CNBC: Discussing the Outlook for the Housing Market and Economy and the Impact of Tax Law Changes May 22, 2019
    First American Chief Economist Mark Fleming was interviewed on FOXBusiness and CNBC on Tuesday and discussed the outlook for the housing market and broader economy as well as the impact of tax law changes on housing.
  • Why Did Housing Market Potential Improve in April? May 20, 2019
    The housing market continued to underperform its potential in April 2019, but the performance gap shrank compared with March. Actual existing-home sales remain 1.3 percent below the market’s potential, but the performance gap narrowed from 2.0 percent last month, according to our Potential Home Sales model. That means the housing market has the potential to […]
    Mark Fleming
  • How Have the 2017 Tax Law Changes Impacted Real Estate Prices? May 13, 2019
    Enacted in 2017, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act reduced tax breaks for homeowners. At the time, many in the real estate industry expected the changes to negatively impact the housing market, particularly in high-priced neighborhoods. The industry concern primarily focused on two specific changes included in the bill: the mortgage interest deduction was limited […]
    Odeta Kushi
  • Why Everything You Know About First-Time Home Buyer Affordability is Wrong May 8, 2019
    We’ve published the findings from a new study that provides an in-depth look at the trends shaping affordability, specifically for first-time home buyers, titled “Why Everything You Know About First-Time Home Buyer Affordability is Wrong.” The study, developed by First American Chief Economist Mark Fleming and Deputy Chief Economist Odeta Kushi, incorporates unique insights and […]