If you’re a homeowner thinking about listing your home this spring, you may be wondering if it’s still a good time to sell your house. Here’s the good news. Even with higher mortgage rates, buyer traffic is actually picking up speed.
Data from the latest ShowingTime Showing Index, which is a measure of buyers actively touring homes, helps us visualize how much buyer demand has increased in recent months (see graph below):
As the graph shows, in the first two months of 2023 we have seen a noticeable increase in buyer traffic. This trend is likely attributed to the fact that there is a limited number of homes for sales which keeps shoppers out looking even during the “slower” months.
To help tell the story of why this report is significant, let’s compare foot traffic this February with each February for the last six years (see graph below). It shows this was one of the best Februarys for buyer activity we’ve seen in recent memory.
Looking back over the last six years, we saw the most February buyer traffic in 2021 and 2022 (shown in green above), but as we all know, those years were highly unusual for the housing market. So, if we compare February 2023 with the more normal, pre-pandemic years, data shows this year still shows a clear rise in buyer activity.
The increase in buyer traffic is even more noteworthy considering the increase in mortgage rates this February. The Freddie Mac 30-year fixed mortgage rate rose from 6.09% during the week of February 2nd to 6.50% in the week of February 23rd. But, even with higher rates, more buyers continue to look for homes.
Jeff Tucker, Senior Economist at Zillow, says the increased buyer activity could continue:
“More buyers will keep coming out of the woodwork. We always see a seasonal uptick in home shoppers in March and April . . .”
If you’re looking to sell your house, seeing buyers still active in the market this year should be encouraging. It’s a sign buyers are out there and could be looking for a home just like yours.