Are you happy in your home, or are you looking to move?
If your answer to the first question is yes, you’re in the company of 83 percent of homeowners, according to Zillow’s annual report on Consumer Housing Trends. In fact, 63 percent have no intention of moving, either because they’re content with their current home, or deterred by the inconvenience it’d be to pack up and relocate.
Americans in general would rather renovate than sell, according to another related report by Zillow. More than three-quarters (76 percent) prefer to spend on upgrades, instead of a down payment on a new place—a catch-22, because when homeowners don’t list, inventory suffers.
“Even in a seller’s market, simultaneously buying and selling is an exercise in frustration,” says Skylar Olsen, director of Economic Research and Outreach at Zillow. “Add to that the emotional history between you and your home, and it’s no wonder low inventory has been in a self-fulfilling cycle. Homeowners may hesitate to sell because of limited options for them as buyers, but by holding on to their homes, they are themselves contributing to low inventory.”
Americans are discouraged, as well, by growing mortgage rates, which is affecting affordability—why choose a higher rate, when you can hang on to a lower one? According to Freddie Mac, mortgage rates are rising toward 5 percent.
There has been a more than three-year downtrend in housing inventory.