Housing Markets Improve Slightly: Freddie Mac

More of the nation’s housing markets are back to or near their normal level, but pockets of weakness remain, according to Freddie Mac.

The national Multi-Indicator Market Index rose 0.18% from December to January, to 82.7. The index rose 7.57% on a year-over-year basis. There are now 34 states plus the District of Columbia near their benchmark average, up from 22 states and D.C. one year ago.

The index measures the stability of the housing market on a nationwide and statewide level, including the District of Columbia, and of the 100 largest metro markets using metrics such as the number of home-purchase applications, payment-to-income ratios and current mortgage rates.

“Mortgage rates fell at the start of the year, helping to bolster affordability heading into the spring season,” Len Kiefer, Freddie Mac’s deputy chief economist, said in a news release.

“But a lack of available inventory of for-sale homes has constrained many markets. We see that reflected in the MiMi purchase applications indicator, which remains weak nationwide.”

The most stable areas during the month were Colorado, Oregon, Mississippi, New Jersey and Arizona.

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