Interest Rates, Sales & Housing Affordability

It is time for Team Jodi’s weekly market update.  I first want to give you today’s interest rates – which are still at all time lows.

Last week I talked about how although year to date sales are up over last year, the market has slowed since the end of the home buyer tax credit.  I am glad to report two important facts.  First, showing activity picked up substantially over June and July and I am getting many more showings on my listings and seeing properties going under contract.  


Second, housing affordability is at or near an all time high.  This has been created by lower home prices and incredibly low mortgage rates.  Right now, 72.3 percent of median-income families nationally can now afford to buy the median-priced house. Historically that number has stayed in the low 60 percent range, and it has in the past slipped below 50 percent.  

In the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area, housing affordability has increased 2% since last year and 19.3% since 2008!

The other great news is that employment numbers improved.  The unemployment rate in the Triangle dropped to 7.5% in July from 7.6% in June.  The Triangle region is the healthiest job market in North Carolina.  By comparison, the jobless rate in Charlotte is 10.6% and the rate for the State is 9.8%. 

These are all great indicators.  Let’s just hope that things continue on this path and keep improving.