April 2021 Market Update
If you’ve read anything about the real estate market lately, you know that prices are still up and supply is still down. Still, there is good news to report.
Some good news about the U.S. economy emerged in April. Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 6.4 percent in the first quarter of 2021, according to an estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). This is significantly stronger in comparison to the fourth quarter of 2020, during which real GDP increased by 4.3 percent.
As noted by the BEA, “The increase in first quarter GDP reflected the continued economic recovery, reopening of establishments, and continued government response related to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the first quarter, government assistance payments, such as direct economic impact payments, expanded unemployment benefits, and Paycheck Protection Program loans, were distributed to households and businesses through the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act and the American Rescue Plan Act.”
Likewise, the economy added 916,000 new jobs in March, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is the highest number of new jobs since last August and well above predictions. It brings the U.S. unemployment rate to 6.0%, which is down from 6.2% in February and from last April’s 14.8% high. Still, it is higher than the 3.5% pre-pandemic unemployment rate in February 2020.
Real estate markets continue to outpace the wider economic recovery. Homes are selling very quickly. The combination of low inventory and high prices is leaving many home buyers (particularly first-time buyers) unsure of whether they will be able to find and afford a home. Fortunately, interest rates remain favorable, and some surveys indicate an increase in the number of homeowners who plan to list their homes for sale in the next six months.
I understand that this can be a tricky time to think about buying or selling a home—which is why I’m here to help. Feel free to contact me any time with your questions or concerns, and we’ll navigate the market together.
Sources: https://www.bea.gov/news/2021/gross-domestic-product-first-quarter-2021-advance-estimate;https://time.com/nextadvisor/in-the-news/new-unemployment-rate-april-2021/; https://www.realtor.com/videos/video-why-consumers-are-feeling-more-confident-this-spring/dadc287a-8657-4601-ab3c-70c7dd949fef/