July 2024 MBS Highway Housing Index

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John Smith
January 1, 2023
5 min read

The MBS Highway National Housing Index dropped 9 points in July 2024 to 44, as buyer activity levels fell across the nation. We’re well into summer, but 7% mortgage rates and still-rising home prices have put a winter chill on transaction volumes.

National Data

The MBS Highway National Housing Index dropped 9 points to 44 in July 2024. This was the third straight MoM decrease. In July 2023, the index was at 54. Although average 30-year mortgage rates eased slightly in June 2024, they remained over 7%. This, combined with higher home prices in most markets, have reduced affordability and diminished buyer demand.

The national Buyer Activity sub-index dropped 8 points to 37 in July 2024, after having dropped 6 points to 45 in June 2024. In July 2023, the Buyer Activity sub-index was at 45.

The national Price Direction sub-index fell 10 points to 50 — right at the breakeven point. This means that the percentage of respondents seeing price increases (29%) exactly matched those seeing price reductions. In July 2023, the national Price Direction sub-index was at 63.

Regional Data

Buyer Activity levels declined in six of the seven regions, with only the Northeast (56) managing to stay above the 50 breakeven point. The least active regions were the Southeast (28) and Southwest (26).

All seven regions saw their Price Direction sub-indexes move lower, but five out of the seven remained at or above 50. The strongest home price momentum was in the Northeast (77) and Midatlantic (68). The weakest was in the Southeast (39) and Southwest (34).

“Buyers are balking at 7% mortgage rates and record home prices (in many markets). The Fed holds the key that could unlock both buyers and sellers — rate cuts — but it remains focused on lagging and flawed measures of inflation and employment,” said Barry Habib, MBS Highway’s Founder and CEO.

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