The rapid increase in mortgage rates is detrimental to the real estate market, as many aspiring homeowners are deterred by the monthly interest burden.
According to estimates from Realtor.com, operated by the parent company of The Wall Street Journal, middle-income families can now afford homes priced at only $339,000 after paying a 20% down payment. In contrast, in January of this year, they could afford homes priced at $449,000. In August, the median price of housing in the United States was $389,500.
The high interest rates have resulted in a slowdown in both the housing and lending markets. Black Knight Inc., a loan technology and data company, reports a 30% decline in locked mortgage volumes over the past three months, which is a 60% decrease compared to last year. From August to September, there was also a 26% decrease in the total volume of refinanced loans used to extract funds from homes.