Pew Charitable Trusts: Strategies to Improve the Housing Market

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Pew Charitable Trusts: Strategies to Improve the Housing Market

Pew Charitable Trusts: Strategies to Improve the Housing Market

JANUARY 2013

Strategies to Improve
the Housing Market

BOSTON CONSULTING GROUP
Shubh Saumya
Laurent Desmangles
Roland Kastoun
Lara Kostakidis-Lianos

This report was commissioned by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

This report is intended for educational and informational purposes. References to specific policy makers or companies have been included solely to advance these purposes and do not constitute an endorsement, sponsorship or recommendation by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

Executive Summary

The housing crisis that started six years ago has yet to run its full course. While U.S. home prices are showing encouraging signs of stabilizing—with all 20 cities measured in a major housing index showing price gains in May and June of 20121—this stabilization is not occurring across the board and, as of September 2012, prices were still down nearly 27 percent from their peak in 2006.2 Government and industry have made progress in minimizing losses for homeowners, and mortgage delinquency rates have improved significantly to around 7 percent from a high of almost 11 percent in January 2010.3 Still, experts suggest that we can expect a depressed market for at least three more years. Given the importance of housing to the broader economy, a depressed market is likely to be a continuing drag on economic recovery until the core problems in the housing market are addressed.

This raises a key question for policy makers and industry: What can be done now to address these problems in a way that quickens the pace of recovery and promotes the long-term health of the housing market and the broader economy?

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