Mortgage Rates Rise Slightly, but Home Sellers Gear Up To Sell Anyway as Listing Growth Hits 3-Year High

Mortgage rates jumped this week, giving homebuyers in the midst of the busy spring housing market cause for concern.

“Mortgage rates have been drifting higher for most of the year due to sustained inflation and the reevaluation of the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy path,” Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, said in a statement.

Despite mortgage rates continuing their ongoing bumpy ride, home sellers were plowing ahead for the week ending April 6. 

“This spring, many sellers are actively listing their homes, with the number of newly listed homes up by 30.1% from a year ago,” says® economist Jiaya Xu in her most recent analysis

Read more from

Chesterbrook Is ‘Best Place to Live in PA' Once Again

According to Niche, Chesterbrook is  the best place to live in Pennsylvania in 2024. It's also ranked as the best place to raise a family in the entire country.

Ardmore, Penn Wynne, Swarthmore and Devon also made the top five places to live in the state.


Homebuyers Seeking Better Homes, Not Bigger Homes

Homebuyers want better, not bigger, in 2024, according to a survey by the National Association of Home Builders.

The average home size shrunk from 2,479 square feet in 2022 to 2,411 square feet in 2023, which is the smallest average size in 13 years. The study found that homebuyers are looking for homes that measure around 2,070 square feet, which is a significant decrease from 20 years ago, when the desired size was approximately 2,260 square feet. This may be due to changes in housing affordability, as well as general homebuyer preference.

Thirty-eight percent of builders reported building smaller homes last year and 26% plan to build even smaller ones this year to try to increase affordable housing and provide homebuyers with what they’re looking for.

Read more from the PA Association of Realtors.

Homebuyer Credit Scores Hit Multi-Year High

Average homebuyer credit scores soared to their highest point since 2018 in March, according to Optimal Blue’s March 2024 Originations Market Report.

The average score hit 737, an all-time high in Optimal Blue’s data, which dates back to January 2018.

Scores for FHA borrowers also hit 6-year highs, clocking in at 677 in February and 676 in March. VA and conforming loan scores soared to highs not seen since 2021.

“Driven by rising interest rates and home prices, we’re witnessing the highest average homebuyer credit scores in years,” said Brennan O’Connell, director of data solutions at Optimal Blue. 

Read more from The Mortgage Note.

Millennials Reclaim Position as Largest Group of Home Buyers

Millennials have surged ahead to become the largest group of home buyers, marking a significant shift in the housing market's demographic landscape, according to the latest report from the National Association of Realtors®.

The 2024 Home Buyers and Sellers Generational Trends report, which examines the similarities and differences among recent home buyers and sellers across generations,1 found that the combined share of millennials, both younger (ages 25 to 33) and older (ages 34 to 43), now make up a combined 38% of the home buying market, a substantial increase from 28% last year. Baby boomers, comprising both younger boomers (ages 59 to 68) and older boomers (ages 69 to 77), saw their share decrease from 39% to 31%, relinquishing their position as last year's largest demographic of home buyers.

Read more from the National Association of Realtors.

PA Homeowners Have the Third Deepest Roots

Pennsylvania has the third-most long-tenured homeowners, which are homeowners who’ve lived in their homes for 24 years or more, according to an analysis by This Old House.

Long-tenured homeowners make up a whopping 34.6% of Pennsylvania homeowners, trailing behind only Hawaii (35.8%) and New York (34.8%).

Additionally, some of the deepest-rooted metro areas in the country can be found in Pennsylvania, with several locations across the state seeing exceptionally high percentages of long-tenured homeowners. Pennsylvania towns in the top 25 metro areas include:

Read more from the PA Association of Realtors.

Young Adults Living with Parents: State Differences

An earlier post published last month shows that young adults ages 25-34 continued the post-pandemic trend of moving out of parental homes with the share of those living with parents or parents-in-law dropping to 19.1% in 2022. Geospatial analysis of the 2022 ACS data reveals substantial differences across states, with the Southern and Northeastern states registering some of the highest shares of young adults remaining in parental homes. Renters’ housing cost burdens explain half of the cross-state variation.

While the national average share declined to 19.2%, more than a quarter of young adults ages 25-34 remain in parental homes in Hawaii (28.1%), California (26.2%) and New Jersey (25.9%). 

Read more from the National Association of Home Builders.

We hope you enjoyed this week's Market News. For more information about how we can help you, please contact us.

Plymouth Meeting: 610.834.8700

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Information and analysis is obtained through third parties and is deemed accurate but not guaranteed. Philadelphia Mortgage Advisors is a licensed mortgage lender by the PA Dept. of Banking and Securities, NJ Dept. of Banking & Insurance, the State of DE, the Florida Office of Financial Regulation and MD Mortgage Lender #23004. NMLS #128570.