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Special Report

Housing Research Brief

August 2023

Misaligned New and Existing Home Sales
Trends Depict a Market in Flux

Single-family debt costs eclipse long-standing high point. In the latter half of August 2023, the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage surpassed 7.2 percent, up about 170 basis points from one year ago and the highest figure in more than two decades. With federal student loan obligations set to resume in October, taking on long-term debt at a 23-year high rate will continue to dissuade prospective first-time homebuyers, in turn bolstering apartment demand. Additionally, elevated mortgage rates deter existing homeowners from listing, providing pricing reinforcement amid a historic shortage of options, especially at the lower end of the cost spectrum. In July 2023, the number of existing homes for sale held about 40 percent below the trailing 10-year same month average. Concurrently, the median price ascended to a 13-month high at $396,700, the fourth-most expensive measure on record.

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