Unaffordable Prices Are Back on Top as Most Common Reason Buyers Can’t Make Purchase

An earlier post revealed that 65% of buyers who were actively engaged in the process of finding a home in the fourth quarter of 2022 have spent 3+ months searching for a home without success. The inability to find an affordable home (45%) is the most common reason buyers looking for 3+ months can’t make a purchase.  In second place follow the inability to find a home in a desirable neighborhood and getting outbid by other buyers (tied at 30%).

When asked what they are most likely to do next if still unable to find a home in the next few months, 46% of active buyers searching for 3+ months said they will continue looking for the ‘right’ home in the same location (down from 50% a quarter earlier); 38% will expand their search area (up from 35%), 23% will accept a smaller/older home (down from 33%), and 16% will buy a more expensive home (down from 28%).

Meanwhile, the share who plan to give up their home search until next year or later fell to 21%, down from 28% in the third quarter. This is the first time the share has declined in six quarters.

**Results come from the Housing Trends Report (HTR) – a research product created by the NAHB Economics team with the goal of measuring prospective home buyers’ perceptions about the availability and affordability of homes for-sale in their markets.  The HTR is produced quarterly to track changes in buyers’ perceptions over time.  All data are derived from national polls of representative samples of American adults conducted for NAHB by Morning Consult.  Results are seasonally adjusted.  A description of the poll’s methodology and sample characteristics can be found here.  This is the final in a series of six posts highlighting results for the 1st quarter of 2022.

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