Ask the economist: First-time buyer misconceptions and the global economy

Mark Palim

DS News

Mark Palim manages the team responsible for Fannie Mae’s macroeconomic and housing forecast and its survey unit. A frequent speaker at industry events and conferences, Palim’s insights have appeared in various media outlets. Before joining Fannie Mae, Palim worked as an economic consultant for PricewaterhouseCoopers and for LECG. He began his career as a fixed-income manager. Palim recently spoke with DS News about the economic factors impacting the U.S. housing and mortgage markets and what we can expect this year.

What are some misconceptions first-time buyers may have about the homebuying process?

It’s a failure on our part as an overall industry to better educate people. It is an infrequent transaction, in that it is an opaque transaction and a high-value part of consumer’s balance sheet, so you have those competing tensions. However, first-time homebuyers face the same knowledge challenges in getting ready to own and knowing what it takes to qualify. 

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