Improvements in affordability expectations have led to an increase in the share of prospective buyers who have moved beyond just the planning phase of their home search: 56% report being actively engaged in the purchase process in the first quarter of 2023, up from 46% a quarter earlier.
The share of prospective buyers actively searching for a home rose in every region between the final quarter of 2022 and the first quarter of 2023: Northeast (50% to 63%), Midwest (42% to 45%), South (47% to 51%), and West (44% to 66%).
Improved affordability, however, has intensified demand and increased competition. Buyers actively looking for a home are having a harder time finding what they want. In the first quarter of 2023, a series high of 71% have spent 3+ months searching, up from 65% a quarter earlier.
* 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 fifth in a series of six posts highlighting results for the 1st quarter of 2023. See previous post on plans to buy and new vs. existing preferences, and housing availability, and housing affordability.