Economic Center Blog
Welcome to the First American Economic Center Blog, a top source for the latest housing market research and analysis driven by Chief Economist Mark Fleming.

Dispelling The Myth Of The 20 Percent Down Payment

By Odeta Kushi on August 6, 2019

Since hitting a low point of 63 percent in 2016, the homeownership rate has rebounded, largely driven by millennial households purchasing their first homes. Many surveys, like one by Bank of the West, indicate that millennials are no different from previous generations – they view homeownership as a main tenet of the American Dream.

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Topics: Millennials Affordability Homeownership

How Has The Housing Market Changed Since The End Of The Great Recession?

By Odeta Kushi on July 3, 2019

June marked the 10-year anniversary of the end of the Great Recession. Amid Independence Day celebrations, assessing how the American dream of homeownership has fared since the recession can provide helpful context for the health of today’s housing market. We have assembled a set of housing metrics and compared their values today with what...

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Topics: Homeownership Progress Index Real House Price Index Affordability Homeownership

Interview On CNBC: Discussing The Outlook For Mortgage Rates And Impact Of Rising Tenure Length On Housing Supply

By FirstAm Editor on June 25, 2019

First American Chief Economist Mark Fleming was interviewed on CNBC last week and discussed the outlook for mortgage rates and the impact of rising tenure length on housing supply.

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Topics: Housing In The News Interest Rates Affordability

The Five Cities Where Affordability Improved The Most And Why

By Mark Fleming on June 24, 2019

Two of the three key drivers of the Real House Price Index (RHPI), household income and mortgage rates, swung in favor of increased affordability in April. The 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage fell by 0.33 percentage points and household income increased 2.7 percent compared to April 2018. When household income rises, consumer house-buying power...

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Topics: Interest Rates Real House Price Index Affordability

Top 10 Cities With The Largest Supply Of Affordable Homes For First-Time Home Buyers

By Odeta Kushi on June 13, 2019

Faced with often misleading affordability metrics and seemingly challenging housing market dynamics, many renters may underestimate their house-buying power and the supply of homes in their market that they can afford. Potential first-time home buyers can benefit from a more targeted examination of affordability, which begins by accurately...

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Topics: Affordability First-Time Home Buyer Outlook Report

Expect The Unexpected -- Faster House Price Appreciation

By Mark Fleming on June 6, 2019

In our most recent Potential Home Sales Model analysis, we noted that the housing market’s potential improved in April because falling mortgage rates and rising household income combined to increase consumer house-buying power more than enough than to offset house price appreciation. In other words, house-buying power won the tug of war with...

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Topics: Real House Price Index Affordability