Key Highlights

  • New data from Gallup indicated only 50% Americans think now is good time to buy a house
  • This downshift in it being a good time to buy is lowest percentile since Gallup began this poll in 2003

The COVID pandemic and its impacts on the economy and joblessness have clearly put the skids on consumers’ perceptions of it being a good time to buy a house. The results on the latest Gallop poll on whether or not now was a good time to buy a home indicated that only 50% thought the time was right to buy a home.

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According to Jeffrey M. Jones, the author of this Gallop study on home buying and good timing, “The greater pessimism about housing comes during the coronavirus pandemic, which has led to a record drop in Americans’ economic confidence and increased worry about their own personal financial situation.”

It’s no wonder that Americans are pessimistic about home buying at the moment. 26M workers have filed for unemployment insurance benefits as of the third week in April. Consumers are still “sheltering” in most parts of the country while for sale homes are being shown virtually and home sales are generally down nationwide.

The last time buyer sentiment was close to being this pessimistic, 52%, was in 2006 during the housing bubble while just last year, 61% of Americans thought it was a good time to buy.

Renters appeared to be more optimistic than current homeowners about home buying at the moment. Could their optimism stem from the perception that most consumers , some 60%, believe home prices will not increase over the next year?

Not only do fewer homeowners and than renters believe home prices will increase, some consumers overall, 25%, anticipate home prices may actually drop in areas where their current or desired neighborhoods are located over the next year.

Regionally, Gallup found that expectations about home prices increasing this year like this:

2019                  2020                  % Change

East                  59%                   44%                    -15%

Midwest             52%                   32%                    -20%

South                 67%                   39%                   -28%

West                  66%                    44%                   -22%


Thanks to Gallup and InmanNews’ Lillian Dickerson.

Also read: Millennials Kick up Homeownership Rates But Remain Overwhelmed by Buying Process, Walkability A Hot Commodity When It Comes to Higher Home Prices, Podcast: Agents, This Is What Happens Next | Boom, Bust, What To Do Now

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