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    The real estate market is possibly the most complex and dynamic market in the world. It is influenced by many factors, such as economic conditions, buyer and seller behavior, and overall market sentiment. 

    To get a grasp of the market, REALTORS® must rely on key indicators that provide valuable insights into market trends and expectations. One such indicator is the REALTORS® Confidence Index. This is the barometer of the real estate market that gives insights into the industry professionals’ confidence levels and expectations.

    Understanding the REALTORS® Confidence Index provides a window into the minds of those immersed in the real estate field, offering invaluable perspectives on market dynamics, trends, and potential opportunities.

    This article will tell you what the REALTORS® Confidence Index is and how it can be resourceful for REALTORS® and other stakeholders. 

    What is the REALTORS® Confidence Index?

    The REALTORS® Confidence Index is a monthly survey conducted by the National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) to gauge the confidence and expectations of real estate professionals in the United States. 

    This index provides valuable insights into the state of the housing market, helping economists, policymakers, and industry experts understand current conditions and anticipate future trends. The index considers factors such as buyer and seller traffic, price trends, and expected home sales to provide stakeholders insight into market conditions and anticipate trends. 

    The key components of the REALTORS® Confidence Index

    Each component of the REALTORS® Confidence Index offers valuable insights into the overall health and dynamics of the industry. 

    Expected home sales

    This aspect reflects the anticipated number of homes that real estate professionals expect to be sold in the near future. It gives insights into market activity and the overall sentiment regarding the pace of sales. Expectations of robust home sales may indicate a positive outlook for the market, while lower expectations may suggest a more cautious or subdued sentiment.

    In its latest survey, NAR found that 19% of respondents anticipate a year-over-year increase in buyer traffic over the next three months. This figure has slightly decreased from the 22% reported in the previous month’s survey but shows an improvement from the 16% recorded a year ago. This data provides insights into the changing expectations of real estate professionals regarding the level of buyer activity in the near future.

    Buyer and seller traffic

    This component measures the volume of potential buyers and sellers actively engaging in real estate transactions. 

    Higher buyer traffic suggests increased demand, indicating a potentially more favorable market for sellers. For instance, the May 2023 REALTORS® Confidence Survey shows that home listings received 3.3 offers compared to 3.1 offers in the previous month. 

    Similarly, higher seller traffic can indicate a higher supply level in the market, potentially benefiting buyers. And the opposite is also true. 

    For instance, the latest report shows that supply is still limited compared to demand. This has boosted buyer competition in the market as more and more buyers are willing to close a deal based only on a virtual tour or open house without waiting to tour the property physically. 

    The report shows that about 25% of buyers also had cash offers, proving high buyer competition in the market. This creates a demand for services such as Approved to Move™, which gives you the ability to offer the seller as good as a cash deal. Such services give you an upper hand to close a deal quickly, even in a hyper-competitive market. 

    Number of closed contracts

    Tracking the number of closed deals provides concrete evidence of market activity and reflects the level of buyer and seller participation. This component offers a concrete measure of the real estate market’s performance and impacts the overall confidence and outlook within the industry.

    The report also offers insights into factors that cause delays or termination of contracts over the period. For instance, the latest report shows that about 7% of contracts were delayed due to appraisal issues. 

    Another important component is the analysis of price trends. This involves tracking changes in property prices over time and assessing their impact on the market. 

    Rising prices may indicate a strong market with high demand, while declining prices could signal potential challenges or a cooling market. Price trends influence buyer behavior, affordability, and overall market dynamics.

    For instance, if there is a consistent upward price trend across various neighborhoods or regions, it suggests a strong market with increasing demand. Conversely, if you notice a price decline, it could indicate a softer market or an oversupply of homes.

    How can the REALTOR® Confidence Index be resourceful?

    The REALTORS® Confidence Index is a resourceful tool for various stakeholders in the real estate industry, including homebuyers, sellers, agents, brokers, policymakers, and economists. Its comprehensive assessment of market sentiment and expectations provides valuable insights that can be leveraged in several ways:

    Informed decision-making

    For homebuyers and sellers, the REALTORS® Confidence Index offers valuable guidance. Buyers can gauge market conditions, such as buyer traffic and price trends, to make informed decisions about when and where to purchase a property. 

    Sellers can assess seller traffic, expected home sales, and pricing trends to strategically position their properties in the market. The index empowers both buyers and sellers to make educated choices based on real-time market insights.

    Strategic planning for agents and brokers

    Real estate professionals can use the REALTORS® Confidence Index to develop effective strategies. It can help you understand market sentiment and expectations, so you can align your services and marketing efforts to meet the demands of buyers and sellers. The index can also help you anticipate market shifts and tailor your approach to maximize your clients’ success. 

    Economic analysis

    Policymakers and economists can also rely on the REALTORS® Confidence Index to gauge the overall health of the real estate market and its potential impact on the broader economy. The index helps them understand the market’s performance, housing affordability, and potential economic growth or risks. This information helps shape policies and inform economic forecasts.

    Market monitoring and trend forecasting

    The REALTORS® Confidence Index is a valuable resource for monitoring market trends and forecasting future developments. Industry professionals can track changes in the index over time to identify patterns and anticipate shifts in market conditions. 

    The index serves as an early warning system for potential market fluctuations, allowing stakeholders to adapt their strategies proactively and capitalize on emerging opportunities.


    The REALTORS® Confidence Index serves as a vital resource for real estate stakeholders across the industry, offering a comprehensive assessment of market sentiment and valuable insights into market expectations.

    The index is an important tool for trend forecasting and anticipating market shifts. Buyers and sellers can leverage market insights to time their transactions and position their properties effectively. On the other hand, real estate professionals can use the index to align their services to meet market demands and gain a competitive edge. 

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