• Shelley McClure
  • News
  • Market Forecast: Low Rates, Housing Market Index, Existing Home Sales and Starts and Permits

Market Forecast: Low Rates, Housing Market Index, Existing Home Sales and Starts and Permits

  • April 17, 2017

Last week, Freddie Mac reported mortgage rates dipped to new 2017 lows.  The lower rates bode well for the spring home buying season, typically the busiest of the year.  This week, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) will release the housing market index on Monday.  On Tuesday, housing starts and building permits come out and on Wednesday there will be the existing home sales report.

The NAHB housing market index surveys builders about current market conditions and their expectations.  The final reading is a weighted average of home builder sentiment on present sales of new homes, sales of new homes expected in the next six months, and traffic of prospective buyers in new homes.  Any reading above the neutral threshold of 50 is considered positive.  In March, the home builders index read 71, a record-setting high. 

Housing starts and building permits can be used to predict new home sales in the coming months.  Housing starts register initiated residential construction projects and building permits tracks permits issued.  In February, residential construction returned mixed numbers with housing starts up 3% and building permits down 6.2%. 

Existing home sales constitute the majority of real estate transactions.  This is the most predictive gauge of housing market demand.  In March, existing home sales dropped 3.7% month-over-month, but increased 5.4% year-over-year.  Typically, spring is one of the busiest home buying seasons, so existing home sales may turn around. 

Home builders’ outlook has been positive and earlier this month construction spending increased.  With low mortgage rates, spring is shaping up to be an active housing season.  


Sources: HousingWire, MarketWatch, Bloomberg, Mortgage News Daily

Shelley McClure

NMLS # 1541437

Shelley McClure

PHONE: (208) 440-7053

CMG Image
© CMG Financial, All Rights Reserved. CMG Financial is a registered trade name of CMG Mortgage, Inc., NMLS ID #1820 in most, but not all states. CMG Mortgage, Inc. is an equal opportunity lender with corporate office located at 3160 Crow Canyon Road, Suite 400, San Ramon, CA 94583 888-264-4663. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Residential Mortgage Lending Act No. 4150025; AK #AK1820; AZ #0903132; Colorado regulated by the Division of Real Estate; Georgia Residential Mortgage Licensee #15438; Illinois Residential Mortgage Licensee; Kansas Licensed Mortgage Company #MC.0001160; Massachusetts Mortgage Lender License #MC1820 and Mortgage Broker License #MC1820; Mississippi Licensed Mortgage Company Licensed by the Mississippi Department of Banking and Consumer Finance; Licensed by the New Hampshire Banking Department; Licensed by the NJ Department of Banking and Insurance; Licensed Mortgage Banker – NYS Department of Financial Services; Ohio Mortgage Broker Act Mortgage Banker Exemption #MBMB.850204.000; Licensed by the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation #ML-3000; Rhode Island Licensed Lender #20142986LL; and Licensed by the Virginia State Corporation Commission #MC-5521. CMG Mortgage, Inc. is licensed in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Offer of credit is subject to credit approval. For information about our company, please visit us at www.cmgfi.com. To verify our complete list of state licenses, please visit www.cmgfi.com/corporate/licensing and NMLS Consumer Access (www.nmlsconsumeraccess.org).