The drop in homebuilder sentiment is another issue affecting the housing market. Data from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) shows the buyer traffic number has fallen to the lowest level since 2014. This follows eight consecutive months of declines for single family homebuilder confidence.
Robert Dietz, NAHB’s chief economist, said he expected single-family housing starts this year to post their first decline in more than a decade, a consequence of higher mortgage rates, and ongoing higher construction costs.
He also agreed that the housing market was in recession.
Homebuilder stocks are also down, with builders Lennar, Toll Brothers, KB Home and D.R. Horton (the largest builder in the US by volume) all reporting negative numbers.
Odeta Kushi, First American’s deputy chief economist, said home sales were “likely to further fall”, while her colleague, chief economist Mark Fleming, said prices were still going strong, but “less so than three months ago”.