How Will the Presidential Election Impact Real Estate?

How Will the Presidential Election Impact Real Estate? | MyKCM
A challenging year

The year 2020 will be remembered as one of the most challenging times of our lives. A worldwide pandemic, a recession causing historic unemployment, and a level of social unrest perhaps never seen before have all changed the way we live. Only the real estate market seems to be unaffected, as a new forecast projects there may be more homes purchased this year than last year.

As we come to the end of this tumultuous year, we’re preparing for perhaps the most contentious presidential election of the century. Today, it’s important to look at the impact past presidential election years have had on the real estate market.

Is there a drop-off in home sales during a presidential election year?

BTIG, a research and analysis company, looked at new home sales from 1963 through 2019 in their report titled One House, Two House, Red House, Blue House. They noted that in non-presidential years, there is a -9.8% decrease in November compared to October. This is the normal seasonality of the market, with a slowdown in activity that’s usually seen in fall and winter.

However, it also revealed that in presidential election years, the typical drop increases to -15%. The report explains why:

“This may indicate that potential homebuyers may become more cautious in the face of national election uncertainty.”

Are those sales lost forever?

No. BTIG determined:

“This caution is temporary, and ultimately results in deferred sales, as the economy, jobs, interest rates and consumer confidence all have far more meaningful roles in the home purchase decision than a Presidential election result in the months that follow.”

In a separate study done by Meyers Research & Zonda, Ali Wolf, Chief Economist, agrees that those purchases are just delayed until after the election:

“History suggests that the slowdown is largely concentrated in the month of November. In fact, the year after a presidential election is the best of the four-year cycle. This suggests that demand for new housing is not lost because of election uncertainty, rather it gets pushed out to the following year.”

Will it matter who is elected?

To some degree, but not in the overall number of home sales. As mentioned above, consumer confidence plays a significant role in a family’s desire to buy a home. How may consumer confidence impact the housing market post-election? The BTIG report covered that as well:

“A change in administration might benefit trailing blue county housing dynamics. The re-election of President Trump could continue to propel red county outperformance.”

Again, overall sales should not be impacted in a significant way.

Bottom Line

If mortgage rates remain near all-time lows, the economy continues to recover, and unemployment continues to decrease, the real estate market should remain strong up to and past the election.

About the Author
Joshua Stephens is the founder and president of Moving Greater Boston and a Vice President of Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Warren Residential. After graduating from UMASS Amherst with a degree in psychology in 2008, Josh dedicated five years to social service work on the North Shore before joining Berkshire Hathaway in 2013, where he found his professional calling and quickly distinguished himself as a motivated innovator capable of synthesizing the needs of buyers, sellers, investors, and developers. In just a few short years, Josh formed Moving Greater Boston and achieved over $100 million in sales after only 7 years in the business. Josh's team has been consistently recognized at both the local and national levels, receiving numerous prestigious awards for sales and customer service. Last year, the Moving Greater Boston team was awarded the coveted Chairman’s Circle Platinum award for all of Berkshire Hathaway Home Services, which recognizes agents and teams that are in the top 1% for sales across a network of over 70,000 agencies. In 2017, Josh was also personally selected to serve on the Berkshire Hathaway Home Services National REthink Council, an honor bestowed upon only 15 agents among thousands of applicants. Despite his many and ongoing successes in the world of real estate, Joshua has never lost sight of his social work roots. A compassionate and principled professional who knows the value of strong communities, Josh continues his advocacy outside of the office by being actively involved in a number of local organizations and charities. In 2016, he was instrumental in conceptualizing and developing Business Networking International (BNI) Prospect Hill, an organization that connects local business professionals and aspiring entrepreneurs. As a native of Massachusetts, Joshua has an intimate knowledge of Boston real estate, while having a degree in psychology helps him to understand each of his clients' unique needs, enabling him to connect them with ideal communities, an opportunity which he considers both a priority and privilege. Rather than simply facilitating the buying and selling of property, Josh views his role as a realtor as a lifelong commitment to continually serving the best interests of the people who have put their trust in him. Josh continually strives for excellence in service, provides in-depth knowledge of the market, and blends unwavering integrity with amenable good humor to alleviate the stress of real estate transactions and assure the experience is one that lets the sensation of being in the perfect place, at the perfect time, truly resonate.