Signs of revival are becoming evident in housing markets around the country, but there are still a number of obstacles to a true recovery, according to The State of the Nation’s Housing report released last month by the Joint Center for Housing Studies (JCHS) of Harvard University.
“While still in the early innings of a housing recovery, rental markets have turned the corner, home sales are strengthening, and a floor is beginning to form under home prices,” said Eric S. Belsky, JCHS managing director.
Belsky said home ownership continues to be a major life goal for most young adults, but they have been waiting for the job and housing markets to stabilize before investing in a home. “As markets tighten, these fence-sitters may begin to take advantage of today’s lower home prices and unusually low mortgage rates,” he said.
The report that a backlog of almost 2 million homes in the foreclosure process will most likely keep distressed sales elevated and could limit price increases in areas hit hard by foreclosures. Homeowners who owe more on their mortgages than their homes are worth also may stunt growth in the housing market because they’re unable to move out or move up.