Judy Boyle, Realtor®
As we prepare to say goodbye to 2021 — another crazy year in so many ways — it is only human nature to set our sights on the new year with hope and anticipation. As we wrap up the year and head into 2022, we may even have a little apprehension as we will all be asking the same questions: When will the pandemic subside? When will the supply chain issues leading to inflation be resolved? And my personal favorite: When will the real estate bubble burst?
While I cannot comment on the pandemic or supply chain concerns as those are outside my area of expertise, I certainly feel qualified to provide a professional opinion and present some projections with regards to the real estate market for 2022 and look to the trusted industry experts for help in doing so.
First, let’s clear up the misconception that we are in a housing bubble. According to CNBC Real Estate Correspondent Diana Olick, “We say bubble because we can’t believe how much prices have gone up. A bubble tends to be something that’s inflated that could burst at any minute and that’s not really the case here.”
The reality is that the main cause of the current housing demand is low mortgage rates. According to Doug Duncan, Senior VP & Chief Economist at Fannie Mae, “Right now, we forecast mortgage rates to average 3.3% in 2022 which, though slightly higher than 2020 and 2021, by historical standards remains extremely low and supportive of mortgage demand and affordability.” Freddie Mac agrees but feels the average will rise a bit to 3.5% by the third quarter.
Supply is also an issue. According to the National Association of Realtors, the U.S. has underbuilt its housing needs by at least 5.5 million units over the past 20 years. That’s a stark comparison to the previous housing bubble in 2008 when overbuilding was the issue.
“So, we’ve got a boost in demand that’s due to record low mortgage rates and we’ve got a shrinkage of supply,” states CoreLogic Chief Economist Frank Nothaft. “So, between more demand and less supply, prices are up and they’re up at the fastest pace since the 1970’s.” But this doesn’t mean the bubble is going to burst. It just means that as long as mortgage rates remain low, buyers want to buy. As mortgage rates continue to creep up, buyer demand will dwindle and the market will become more balanced.
So how will this affect potential home sellers? According to the Massachusetts Association of Realtors® Market Update in October, closed sales in MA were down 15% from the same time last year, inventory was down 37% and median home sale prices were up 15%. Looking into the near future, industry experts believe the rate of appreciation will fall below 15% in 2022 yet still remain way above the twenty-year average of 5.1% and will continue to appreciate at an even slower rate through 2024. This is not a bubble; it is deceleration.
And what does all this mean for potential home buyers? Just because the price of the house is elevated, the cost to borrow money is cheap. Since home values are likely to continue to rise 7-13% each year for the next few years, real estate will still provide the highest return on your investment.
Bottom line, for home buyers and sellers alike, the opportunities are tremendous. The market is shifting but nothing is going burst.
I consider it an honor to help others find quality of life through real estate, and I would be honored to be a part of your plan. Let’s meet today to set you up for success in 2022!
Boyle lives in Northborough where she is also a Chapter Leader of the Neighbor Brigade, a non-profit charitable organization that assists families in times of crisis. She has been a Real Estate Agent since 2003 and consistently wins awards and accolades for excellence in customer service and sales volume, culminating with her induction into the RE/MAX Hall of Fame. She is also a Children’s Miracle Network ‘Miracle Agent’ and makes a donation to Boston Children’s Hospital on behalf of every home buyer and seller upon closing.
Boyle’s mission is to empower her clients to make informed decisions through data-driven insights and local market knowledge. Her passion is helping others find quality of life through Real Estate. She invites you to follow her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/judyboylerealtor, call or email her for the FALL 2021 Home Buyer and/or Seller Guides or for a complimentary market analysis.
Judy Boyle, Realtor®
Proudly serving the Boroughs and Beyond with honesty and integrity since 2003