30 Year Loans at 50 Year Low
Rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage hit the lowest point in nearly fifty years last week according to Freddie Mac's Primary Mortgage Market Survey for the week ending May 28. It’s the third record low in recent months. Freddie Mac has been tracking mortgage interest rate data since 1971.
Contracts and closings for home sales crashed in April during widespread stay-at-home orders. Pending home sales (contracts signed) dropped 21.8% and existing home sales (completed transactions) were down 17.8% according to the National Association of Realtors® (NAR). NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun summed up April's housing activity saying, "It is no surprise to see the markedly reduced activity in signing contracts for home purchases. In the coming months, buying activity will rise as states reopen and more consumers feel comfortable about homebuying.”
The chronic shortage of housing inventory is credited with keeping home prices from plummeting according to industry experts. CoreLogic Chief Economist Dr. Frank Nothaft takes a cautious view, saying "If unemployment remains elevated in early 2021, then we can expect home prices to soften." NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun offers a more bullish perspective, saying, "…the listings that are on the market are still attracting buyers and boosting home prices. More listings and increased home construction will be needed to tame price growth.”
Hourly room rentals are in demand since the quarantine. Once used to spend time with someone, hourly spaces are in high demand to get away from people. The booking app Globe has seen its business explode during the lockdown, with a waiting list of over 10,000. User Brittany Gwynn explained her Globe usage to the New York Times saying, "Our love is unlimited. But we're getting on each other's nerves.”