Showing activity is now starting to reach pre-crisis levels: While activity remains down 15 percent compared to this time last year, consistent growth has significantly reduced the deficit from roughly 75 percent one month after the shelter-in-place order went into effect. And as California’s economy begins to open up, fewer REALTORS® are reporting clients withdrawing their home offers or removing homes from the MLS. Prices have largely stayed stable, but a recent uptick in discounts on closed sales indicates sellers may start making more concessions to keep transactions on track.
With states beginning to reopen and mortgage applications on the rise nationwide, some suspect the typical spring home buying season will see a resurgence this summer. Demand has been strong enough that Redfin, which furloughed 41 percent of its agents and 7 percent of staff in early April, will be bringing around 350 employees back to the office ahead of schedule. Still, for the near future, C.A.R is predicting more declines into May, June and potentially July.
Across the nation, roughly 3.6 million Americans missed mortgage payments in April; the delinquency rate has nearly doubled from 3.06 percent to 6.45 percent. And a recent survey from the U.S. Census Bureau found that one in five Americans reported they had slight or no confidence in their ability to pay their rent or mortgage in June. With 8.8 percent of all mortgages now in forbearance, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has taken steps to ensure that borrowers in forbearance on Fannie Mae- and Freddie Mac-backed mortgages can still take advantage of low interest rates for purchasing a home or refinancing an existing home.
Many have theorized the pandemic will drive buyers out of cities and towards the less crowded suburbs; a Zillow survey earlier this month found that a majority of people who recently began working from home would consider moving. But Zillow has not seen that shift reflected in actual search results thus far, even with search traffic on the rise.
-Source: California Association of Realtors