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.

How Can Housing Affordability Improve During Periods Of Economic Decline When House Prices Rise

By Mark Fleming on September 28, 2020

Affordability improved in July as two of the three key drivers of the Real House Price Index (RHPI), household income and mortgage rates, swung in favor of increased affordability, outpacing the rise in nominal house price appreciation. The average 30-year, fixed mortgage rate fell by 0.75 percentage points and household income increased 5.5...

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Topics: Interest Rates Real House Price Index Affordability

Housing Market Potential Reaches Highest Level Since 2007

By Mark Fleming on September 21, 2020

Since hitting a low point during the initial stages of the pandemic, the only major industry to display immunity to the economic impacts of the coronavirus is the housing market. Housing has experienced a strong V-shaped recovery and is now exceeding pre-pandemic levels. This is largely because the economic distress from the pandemic has...

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Topics: Interest Rates Potential Home Sales tenure

Where Housing Affordability Is Declining The Most

By Mark Fleming on August 24, 2020

The coronavirus pandemic continues to wreak havoc on global and domestic economies, yet housing has thus far managed an impressive V-shaped recovery. Housing’s strong rebound has been driven by several factors that existed before the coronavirus outbreak but have continued or even gained strength amid the pandemic. Mortgage rates are even lower...

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Topics: Interest Rates Real House Price Index Affordability

Why Has Housing Market Potential Rebounded During The Pandemic?

By Mark Fleming on August 20, 2020

With a July unemployment rate of 10.2 percent and roughly 30 million Americans claiming unemployment benefits, it’s clear that the domestic economy continues to feel the pain inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic. Yet the housing industry, at least for now, continues its impressive V-shaped rebound. Weekly purchase applications have surpassed...

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Topics: Interest Rates Potential Home Sales tenure

This Time It’s Different – Why A Wave Of Foreclosures Is Unlikely

By Odeta Kushi on August 10, 2020

Following the rapid contraction in U.S. economic activity as a result of the outbreak of COVID-19, the unemployment rate spiked to 14.4 percent in April and remained elevated in May (13.0 percent), setting the mark for the two highest recorded rates in the post-World War II era. Despite the federal foreclosure moratorium, there were fears that...

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Topics: Housing Interest Rates

Interview With Yahoo! Finance: Impact Of COVID-19 On The Summer Housing Market

By FirstAm Editor on July 30, 2020

First American Chief Economist Mark Fleming was interviewed on Yahoo! Finance earlier this month, discussing the impact of COVID-19 on the housing market and mortgage rates dropping below 3 percent for the first time ever.

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Topics: Housing In The News Interest Rates