The 2023 housing market has seen many ups and downs, leaving investors wondering what to expect in 2024. The good news is that regardless of interest rate increases and lower than average inventory, real estate investments remain one of the most lucrative areas to invest in as we head into the new year.
High Demand Means High Return
One of the central trends that defines the market today is low inventory and high demand. According to Lawrence Yun, Chief Economist for the National Association of REALTORS®, “Lack of supply is behind ongoing multiple offer scenarios on moderate- to mid-priced homes.” This demand is also fueling rising home prices, which NAR predicts will increase from an average of $384,900 in 2023 to $395,000 in 2024. This “seller’s market” can work in favor of the investor. Those who purchase, upgrade and list a property could see a quick sale and solid return. For investors waiting to list a property they already own, now is the time.
Mortgage Rates Expected to Stabilize
Although interest rates have been nearing 7% recently, Fannie Mae predicts an average rate of 6.5% in 2024. This could lead to more buyers entering the market in late 2024 and into 2025. Strong job growth may also contribute to buyer demand. The Federal Open Market Committee forecasts the unemployment rate to average a “healthy” 4.1%, an important factor that should positively impact the real estate market as a whole.
Consumer Confidence is Growing
Investors will be happy to learn that consumer confidence is rising, a positive sign of good things to come. According to the Coldwell Banker® 2023 International Consumer Survey, a significant number of respondents say they are optimistic about the state of the U.S. real estate market. In fact, 80% of luxury consumers believe purchasing real estate in the United States is a safe investment, and 76% rate the current market conditions to purchase a home as “excellent” and/or “good.”
New Construction on the Rise
To answer the housing demand, new builds are expected to increase next year. The National Association of Home Builders predicts that single-family production will rise from an average of 744,000 units in 2023 to 925,000 in 2024. Newly constructed homes could not only be a promising investment opportunity – they are also expected to lessen demand and help stabilize home prices.
Rental Property Remains a Reliable Investment
Although most experts predict that rent growth to decelerate in 2024, rental property is still a reliable real estate investment. People who take advantage of the market by selling their current home often need to move into a rental unit as they transition, ensuring investors have plenty of potential lessees. Rental income also helps offset higher mortgage rates for the investor, and rental property offers owners the benefits of long-term appreciation and various tax breaks.
Buyers are Motivated
Regardless of market trends, life goes on, and housing needs evolve. Retirees, growing families and divorcing couples don’t often have the luxury of waiting for the perfect time to move. Investors should also consider the increased mobility that comes with work-from-home buyers. Many are heading to more affordable regions, leading to pockets of growth that investors can take advantage of.
Whether the market is trending up or down, smart investors pay close attention to current trends and adjust their strategy accordingly. Once you understand the real estate landscape, you can confidently plan your next move.