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Will Home Prices Fall as Mortgage Rates Rise?

Mortgage interest rates have increased by more than half of a point since the beginning of the year. They are projected to increase by an additional half of a point by year’s end. Because of this increase in rates, some are guessing that home prices will depreciate.

However, some prominent experts in the housing industry doubt that home values will be negatively impacted by the rise in rates.

Mark Fleming, First American’s Chief Economist:

“Understanding the resiliency of the housing market in a rising mortgage rate environment puts the likely rise in mortgage rates into perspective – they are unlikely to materially impact the housing market…

The driving force behind the increase are healthy economic conditions…The healthy economy encourages more homeownership demand and spurs household income growth, which increases consumer house-buying power. Mortgage rates are on the rise because of a stronger economy and our housing market is well positioned to adapt.”

Terry Loebs, Founder of Pulsenomics:

“Constrained home supply, persistent demand, very low unemployment, and steady economic growth have given a jolt to the near-term outlook for U.S. home prices. These conditions are overshadowing concerns that mortgage rate increases expected this year might quash the appetite of prospective home buyers.”

Laurie Goodman, Codirector of the Housing Finance Policy Center at the Urban Institute:

“Higher interest rates are generally positive for home prices, despite decreasing affordability…There were only three periods of prolonged higher rates in 1994, 2000, and the ‘taper tantrum’ in 2013. In each period, home price appreciation was robust.”

Industry reports are also calling for substantial home price appreciation this year. Here are three examples:

Bottom Line

As Freddie Mac reported earlier this year in their Insights Report, “Nowhere to go but up? How increasing mortgage rates could affect housing,”

“As mortgage rates increase, the demand for home purchases will likely remain strong relative to the constrained supply and continue to put upward pressure on home prices.”

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About Area

Blairsville, Georgia is a small mountain town in the Appalachian Mountains. For many people who live in larger cities, these mountains provide a simple escape from life’s daily stresses. Stunning scenery among Northeast Georgia’s gentle peaks and beautiful creeks and rivers makes this region a natural paradise. Encompassing nearly two-thirds of Blairsville, the Chattahoochee National Forest has winding trails that lead visitors through scenic mountains, rushing rivers, and cascading waterfalls. This is where you can step back in time with nature and walk where the Cherokee Indians once lived. The Chattahoochee National Forest boasts scenic attractions such as Helton Creek Falls, Trackrock Archaeological Area (site of ancient Indian petroglyphs), and Brasstown Bald – Georgia’ s highest peak. The Russell-Brasstown Scenic Byway and the Southern Highroads Trail offer outstanding scenery. Nearby Vogel State Park with its Civilian Conservation Corps Museum is a longtime favorite for camping or a cozy cabin retreat. Blairsville's Town Square is frequently the venue for annual events such as the Downtown Spring Arts & Crafts Festival, the Memorial Day Parade, the Green Bean Festival, the Bluegrass Festival, the Sorghum Parade, Hometown Halloween on the Square, and the Christmas Parade. Everyone is invited to these family oriented celebrations! Just south of the Square, the Historical Society develops and maintains the Mountain Life Museum. It is home to the 1906 Grapel Mock House, the 1861 Payne Cabin, and annual events such as the Mountain Market and Heritage Festival. Look for live animals, heritage demonstrations, and hands-on activities such as panning for gold. Blairsville is a quaint mountain town where things move at a slower pace, and people take time to stop and smell the roses, and it makes all the difference.

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