Unaffordable Prices Are Most Common Reason Buyers Can’t Make Purchase

An earlier post revealed that 71% of buyers who were actively engaged in the process of finding a home in the first quarter of 2023 have spent 3+ months searching for a home without success. The inability to find an affordable home remains the most common reason buyers looking for 3+ months can’t make a purchase, cited by 40% (compared to 45% who cited it a quarter earlier).  In second place is the inability to find a home with desirable features (35%), followed by the inability to find a home in a desirable neighborhood (33%) and getting outbid (30%).


When asked what they are most likely to do next if still unable to find a home in the next few months, 40% of active buyers searching for 3+ months said they will continue looking for the ‘right’ home in the same location (a share that’s been trending down since reaching 52% a year ago); 40% will expand their search area, 27% will accept a smaller/older home, and 26% will buy a more expensive home.

Meanwhile, the share who plan to give up their home search until next year or later edged up to 23%, up from 21% in the fourth quarter of 2022.


*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 2023. See previous posts on plans to buy, new vs. existing preference, housing availability, and housing affordability, and active buyers.

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One thought on “Unaffordable Prices Are Most Common Reason Buyers Can’t Make Purchase

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