November 1st the Fed decided once again to refrain from increasing its benchmark rate. This was one of the many factors that started the dramatic interest rate decline in early November. Then on November 14th the October inflation reading for all Urban Consumers dropped from 3.7% to 3.2%. We ended October with a 30-year fixed interest rate of over 8% but we sit today at right at 7%. This is great news. Sales are still a little slow but that happens a lot this time of year.
The US Median Home Price is still doing well. In March of 2020 when the pandemic started the median home price in the United States was $282,600. Today the median home price is $396,100. During the subprime bubble right before the Great Recession of 2007, the median home price was $221,900. I give you this stat so you can see how much we have grown in 3 short years. The median home price in Metro Atlanta is $379,200 as of the 3rd Quarter of 2023.
This was a pretty interesting statistic about mortgages. 39.3% of the homes in the United States are mortgage-free. Approximately 33 million US households are owned free and clear. If they sell they will likely bring cash to the next sale. This is a major factor that we have seen so many cash sales in the last several years. In October alone cash sales in the US accounted for 29% of the transactions. The highest percentage of sales in 9 years.
My husband and I both try to pry info out of my brother-in-law who is an economist with the Federal Reserve Bank. He is much more in the know and understands how all the different circumstances affect the economy. However, he is the first person to tell me that no one can confidently forecast the future. It’s hard to gauge the actions and responses of an entire country and world. Even though it’s impossible to say for sure. So many people who I trust in real estate think that the 2024 and 2025 real estate markets will be the best we have ever seen. I guess we will all have to watch and see what happens. I have seen an uptick in calls about getting homes ready for sale and people getting ready to move in the spring.