Despite higher mortgage rates, Nashville's housing market still competitive

Mortgage Rates
Posted at 10:01 PM, May 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-29 19:16:57-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — When Sarah Bendorf found her Nashville home for sale on Facebook, she acted quick. It's been under construction ever since.

"But we were thinking we'd be able to refinance when we were done — low to mid threes — and it would still be plenty affordable," said Bendorf.

The problem is, since buying the home in March, mortgage rates have gone up roughly 2%, putting Bendorf in a possible financial bind.

At the end of April, she locked in a conventional mortgage at a 45-day rate lock.

"If we're not finished [with construction] in a couple weeks and can close on that conventional loan at 4.75, now interest rates are in the high fives and makes it unaffordable," said Bendorf.

She's not alone. Mortgage rates have been rising over the last few months, impacting potential home buyers like her. Thirty-year fixed rates currently sit at 5.1%. This time last year, that number was at 2.95%.

"We are seeing our interest rates come back from a historical low rate from the past couple of years and it's starting to stabilize out," said Detorie Vaughn Walker, a realtor with The DM Group at simpliHŌM.

That stabilization, he said, could be the reason Nashville's red-hot market is slightly cooling off.

"And when we say there's like a slowdown, what we're saying is instead of seeing ten offers on a house that we list, we're going to see maybe two to three," said Walker. "Or instead of being on the market 24 hours, you might be on the market for a week."

But if you're hoping that means a reprieve in the market, think again.

"The need for housing in Nashville will never go away," said Megan Thomas with The DM Group. "This city is growing, it's turning into a major city and I don't think we'll see it slow down any time soon."

As for Bendorf, the dream of being a Nashville homeowner hangs in the balance, but she still encourages others not to give up on theirs.