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REALTORS® Confidence Index in December Reflects Tempered Market Expectations

Confidence about current market conditions was essentially unchanged from November to December [1]. The REALTORS® Confidence Index for single family sales registered at 59 (same as in November). The indexes for townhouses/duplexes was at 43 (42 in November) while the index for condominiums was at 37 (38 in November). An index of 50 marks “moderate” conditions. See the December REALTORS® Confidence Index Survey for more information.

Confidence about the next 6 months saw a slight improvement in December. The 6-month outlook index for single family rose to 66 (64 in November). The index for townhouses slightly rose to 48 (46 in November) while the index for condominiums registered at 44 (43 in November). REALTORS® expressed concern about a variety of factors that can impact the market such as the new regulations pertaining to the Ability to Pay Rule for Qualifying Mortgage, the reduction in FHA loan limits, uncertainty regarding flood insurance rates, and the state of the economy.

[1] An index of 50 delineates “moderate” conditions and indicates a balance of respondents having “weak” (index=0) and “strong” (index=100) expectations. The index is calculated as a weighted average using the share of respondents for each index as weights. The index is not adjusted for seasonality effects.

Jed Smith, Managing Director, Quantitative Research

Jed Smith is Managing Director, Quantitative Research with the National Association of Realtors®. He has worked on real estate issues for the past 20 years, providing input on a variety of housing, commercial real estate, tax, and planning issues. Recently he has been involved in several international studies.

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