Consumer Sentiment Indices and the State of the American Psyche

Jeff considers how the instability of many factors in the current economic climate – the war in Ukraine, housing inventory, mortgage rates, and inflation – impact the American psyche. Monthly surveys like the Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index report how consumers feel about conditions in the economy and what actions they’re likely to take. Is the American psyche in good shape at the moment? Guests Audrea Johnson, Dr. Jeannie Bertoli, and Julie Reis share ways to help boost consumer confidence.

Trying to Make Sense Out of Inflation Information

Jeff wonders why it’s so difficult to get a more definitive handle on the direction of inflation. Economists give conflicting forecasts based on information released by the Fed, with predictions ranging from the stickiness of inflation to possible sudden drops in rates. How can buyers plan in such an unstable environment? Guests Charles Giscombe, Jamal Ransford, and Julie Peisner shed some light on options to give consumers the confidence to embark on their homebuying journey.

Is a Good Mortgage Rate Out of Reach for Most Home Buyers?

With rates on the rise again from the almost unheard-of lows seen during the last couple of years, many people wonder if they can buy a home at an affordable rate. Perhaps credit scores aren’t what they should be, a family member fell ill, or there was a gap in employment during the pandemic, resulting in a change in income. Are these and other issues roadblocks to homeownership? Guests Luke Manke, Tim Wise, and Bill Orr offer insights into finding help in this uncertain market.

Factors That Affect the Decision to Buy a Home

Jeff explores many of the questions that worry homebuyers, some of which are always on the checklist and others that have stemmed from difficulties exacerbated by the pandemic. Can we afford a home? What are the rates? Will the Fed keep raising rates, and how will that affect the prices of everything else in our lives? What if there has been a job loss or medical emergency? Guests Charles Giscombe, Kim Tran, and Tomas Trujillo share some tools to make homebuying easier.

The Outlook for 2023

Jeff makes some predictions for 2023 regarding the real estate industry, home values, and interest rates. How do experts view the economic health of the year ahead? Will the Fed Fund rate increase? What changes are on the horizon for mortgage rates? Is the specter of a recession looming? Guests Charles Giscombe, George Gonzales, and Joan Rebaza discuss the latest developments in products and communication in the industry to assist consumers in preparing to buy a home.

National is Not Local in the Real Estate Market

Jeff outlines some recommendations for homebuyers in the current real estate market, emphasizing that what is happening nationally does not always reflect the conditions present in individual areas of the country. Buyers need to focus on what is required to buy a home in the specific community they’re interested in and to prepare according to that criteria. Guests Henry Park, Eric Morgenson, and Gentille Chhun comment on changes in the industry and how individual markets are responding.

The Changing Market

Jeff discusses how the various sectors of the real estate market are changing, whether in the individual areas of the country or in the industry itself and how they all comprise a mixed market. Why are conditions not the same across the board, what lies ahead with rates and prices, and is there any relief in sight? Guests Stacy Hartmann, George Gonzales, and Gayle Whiting provide some insight into navigating through the often confusing nature of this current climate.

The Sea Change in the Mortgage Industry

Jeff delves into the many forms of inflation and how the perception of what causes it heralds changes throughout the economy and the mortgage industry. With so many life-altering events occurring over the last several years that have influenced inflation, will this be a motivating factor for buyers who didn’t act when the rates were low? Guests Josh Thompson, Mike Chapman, and Charles Giscombe share how their clients are dealing with these changes on the path to homeownership.

Is a Recession Imminent?

Jeff examines the clues that may lead to a potential recession in the US. The word itself evokes visions of unemployment, a big drop in the stock market, and a weakening of the real estate market. Is it a done deal, or will experts be able to steer the economy away from a major decline in the nick of time? Guests Cindy Bui, Livier Becerra, and Chris Groves advise on how to stay confident in the home-buying process during this turbulent period.

Inflation and the Pursuit of Higher Profit Margins

Jeff explains the relationship between higher costs and profitability to shareholders when it comes to the impact of inflation. The availability of cheaper foreign products has been reduced because of supply chain issues, and with domestic manufacturing not as robust due to the demand for higher wages and profits, consumers must pay more for everything. What does this mean for the housing market? Guests Sonya Hadley, Mark Hays, and Richard Greene share how their regions are affected.