According to a report released last Friday by the Federal Reserve, more Americans are applying for mortgages and purchasing more homes. The fact that this trend continues shows that the U.S. housing market is on the mend.
This report shows the trends from the most recent quarter. The second three-month period of 2016 shows that the total net worth of the country’s citizens increased by 1.2% between April and June. This brings the total to $89.1 trillion dollars. This amount is calculated by taking the total value of stocks, home properties, and assorted other assets, and then subtracting the total amount of debt, including credit cards and mortgages. The figure has not been adjusted for inflation or population growth.
Mutual funds and stocks also increased to $21.2 trillion, a total increase of 2.3%. Housing wealth also increased, rising 1.9% to a total of $25.6 trillion. Many other accounts, including savings, checking, and pension accounts, increased as well.
Mortgage debt overall increased by 2.5% after adjusted for the season. This represents the largest quarterly gain since the housing market crash. June’s mortgage rates are the highest in nine years, although they fell a bit in July. July also represented a seven-year low in all-cash sales.
While this increase does show that the housing market is doing much better, the increase is much smaller than increases from before the crash. Between 2004 and 2005, for example the amount of new mortgage debt increased by more than 10%.