Optimism about housing market dampened by end of buying season

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With the end of the summer home buying season, consumers were less optimistic that it was a good time to purchase or sell a home in October.

Fannie Mae's Home Purchase Sentiment Index decreased 3.1 points to 85.2 from a record high of 88.3 in September. The index was 81.2 for October 2016.

The drop in both buyer and seller sentiments is "a shift we expect at this time of year moving out of the summer home buying season," said Fannie Chief Economist Doug Duncan in a press release.

"Indicators of broader economic and personal financial sentiment remain relatively steady. Overall, these results are consistent with our view that the housing market will continue its slow, upward grind through 2018."

Even with the declines in both categories, the percentage of those that believe it is a good to sell remained higher than those that think it's a good time to buy. That has been the case every month but one since March.

There was an eight-percentage-point decline in October from the previous month in the net share of those that felt it was a good time to sell, to 30%. For October 2016, this was at 13%.

The net share of consumers who said it was a good time to purchase a home fell six percentage points to 22%. This was down from 30% one year ago.

There was no change from September in the net share of those surveyed that expect home prices to rise, staying at 40%. Meanwhile those that say interest rates will decline over the next 12 months increased by one percentage point to 46%.

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Housing market Purchase Mortgage rates Home prices Fannie Mae