Mackenzie Bathgate and her husband, Jon, have been trying to buy a home in Lansdale, PA., for eight months now.
“At this point, we’ve seen 28 homes in person, but ultimately made seven different offers, each one a little bit more aggressive than the last just because we got so tired of it,” Bathgate said. “It’s supposed to be exciting and it’s been the opposite.”
Bathgate said they had waived inspections and bid tens of thousands of dollars above asking price, and still no luck.
Meanwhile, they’ve been watching interest rates spiral higher and higher — each increase adding to the pressure of finding their home.
“That’s when we started to feel all that stress of like, ‘Oh God, we need to make sure every weekend is focused on seeing these three specific houses that we’re interested in,’ because we know that they’re going to have an offer accepted by Monday.”
The couple is now exhausted and have decided to put their search on pause, just as the Federal Reserve raised interest rates again.
On Wednesday, the central bank hiked rates by three-quarters of a percent. It is the fourth time it’s done so this year — a pace that the U.S. has not seen since the late 1980s.
The average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage is now around 5.5%, almost double what it was at the start of the year, according to Freddie Mac. Those higher rates, combined with already high home prices, mean it’s become a lot harder to buy a house, even if the competition might be slightly less stiff.
“Nationally and locally we’re seeing a cooling down, a decrease in demand, and an increase in supply,” said Ashley Jackson, a realtor with Realty Austin in Austin, TX. “We’re…