Feast or Famine: Housing in 2023 - InvestingChannel

Feast or Famine: Housing in 2023

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Feast or Famine: Housing in 2023

The Juice is confident housing prices will come roaring back in 2023. Over the last few weeks, big-time housing researchers have released data that supports our contention. 

Unless mortgage rates crash, the pain will continue for renters priced out of home ownership. But the struggle for prospective and current homeowners isn’t always real. As the following facts illustrate, home ownership today is confusing and depends a lot on your specific circumstances. 

  1. Of 28 countries the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development measured, the U.S. ranked third from the bottom in percentage of households that owned their homes outright (without mortgage payment) in 2022. 

In Lithuania, 83% of households own their homes free and clear, ranking that nation #1 by a comfortable margin over #2 the Slovak Republic (69%). Other notables on the list: #8 Italy (60%), #10 Japan (48%), #11 Spain (48%), #20 the U.K. (33%), #24 Canada (28%), and, at #26, the U.S., with just 23% of the homeowner population mortgage-free. 

Of course, it’s all relative. In the U.S., where down payments are sometimes low and purchase prices tend to be super high, we like to look at the interest rate on mortgages. Especially now, with 6%-plus rates on the common 30-year note. 

Roughly 85% of outstanding U.S. mortgages have rates of less than 5%, about 65% are under 4%, and approximately 24% are under 3%. That’s comfort for homeowners who locked down lower rates before all hell broke loose.


  1. About 18.2 million – 51.5% – millennials own a home, while just 17.2 million continue to rent in the nation’s 110 biggest metro areas. 

The headlines blare that things are tough for millennials. But as with most economic things in America, it’s a mixed bag. Lots of millennials own homes. But…

  1. A whopping 82% of millennials have at least one regret about buying their first home. 

The biggest regret: paying too lofty an interest rate. No shock. The monthly payments on a mortgage these days can crush the best of budgets. Many of the other regrets centered around maintenance and needing to do too much work on a fixer-upper. 

  1. Of upgrades for your home, replacing the garage door might make the most sense. At an average cost of $4,041, you can expect to recoup 93.3% of your investment when/if you sell your home. 

A close second: replacing vinyl siding with stone veneer recoups an average of 91.4% of your investment. A kitchen remodel comes in third, costing an average of $28,279 to execute and recouping 71.2% of your outlay. 


The Bottom Line: Carry a mortgage at a 6.5% interest rate, and you might be sad. If you’re one of the lucky few who locked in rates under 3%, you might experience schadenfreude

America’s housing market in 2023 is equal parts suffering and thriving. It just depends on who you are, where you live, and when you took the plunge.

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