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Housing Trends: Demand Shifts to Affordable Options Amidst Price Reversal

  • New home prices are now lower than existing homes for the first time since the mid-1980s, marking a significant market shift.
  • Rising demand and shrinking affordability are pushing buyers towards smaller, more affordable housing options, impacting the broader housing market dynamics.

As builders react to rising prices, the housing market is experiencing a major shift. The price trends have now been impacted by this adjustment.

David O’Reilly, CEO of Howard Hughes Holdings explained that since the mid-1980s new houses have been priced higher than older ones. This premium, however, has decreased over the last few months. It has now completely reversed.”

The Commerce Department announced in May that the median price for new homes had decreased by 0.9% on an annual basis, to $417.400. The National Association of Realtors reported a 5.8% rise in the median sale price of existing houses, which reached a new record high of $419.300 during the same time period. The National Association of Realtors attributed this surge to an increase in the sale of high-priced homes and bidding wars.

The price of existing homes has risen even faster since the start of the year. They are now 10.8% higher than they were in January, when the prices stood at $378.600. New home prices began the year at $430.400.

Due to low mortgage rates and persistent demand, homeowners are holding on to their homes. This is contributing to the tight supply.

Recent quarterly reports by home builders show a decrease in the average selling price, indicating a change in preferences among consumers towards smaller and more affordable houses.

This shift is a result of consumers trying to reduce their living space in order to become more affordable, said O’Reilly, whose company works closely with developers.

O’Reilly expressed his optimism for the housing industry, declaring in April that it was the “golden era of homebuilding”. 

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