By KIMBERLEY HAAS
Home affordability is expected to be a pressing issue for American families again this year and although it is not a top priority for Republican presidential candidates yet, they are talking about it.
At a rally last month in Durham, New Hampshire, former President Donald Trump said mortgages have become unattainable to the average person and promised to go after banks if he wins back the White House.
“After three years of Bidenomics, they call it Bidenomics, from hell, the average monthly mortgage payment has gone from $1,746 under my administration to $3,322 today, but you can’t get the money, so it doesn’t matter,” Trump told the crowd.
Trump claimed that “Biden’s handlers are making the banks much richer and making you much poorer.” He speculated that bankers discriminate against conservative borrowers because they are afraid of the radical left.
“I think the bank regulators are doing a big number at the banks because they are not allowed to do business with you, and we are going to get those banks when we get in office. We are going to get them. Nobody knows the banking industry better than me and I’m not going to let them take advantage of you any longer. They’ve taken advantage and what they do to the people in this room, and by the way, millions and millions of others, is a disgrace. We’re going to end it,” Trump said.
Former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley talks about how hard it was for her daughter and son-in-law to buy a home while on the campaign trail.
During a sit-down interview with NH Journal, she brought it up when asked what she will do to bring the housing market back and keep the country from going into another recession.
“So when you think about our kids, and I saw, my daughter just got married, and I saw how hard it was for her and her husband to buy a home. It is really tough. That’s the American Dream. We want all our kids to be able to do that,” Haley said.
Haley said that getting interest rates down, focusing on regulations so that more housing supply can open up, and cutting taxes for the middle class will help.
“Everybody should know what it means to have the American Dream. We have to get that back in our reach,” Haley said.
Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida has been critical of the Federal Reserve during his presidential campaign, saying its monetary policy was behind the rise in consumer prices.
At a “Politics and Eggs” event hosted by the New Hampshire Institute of Politics and the New England Council this fall, he said the Feds need to be reined in while answering a question about his appeal to younger conservatives who feel disenfranchised with the Republican party or politics in general.
The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was at about 8%.
“How do you go from the average home price in 2019 compared to the average home price today? Your monthly mortgage payment is over twice as much today as it was then. Is anybody’s income going up twice as much as it did from there? Of course it’s not,” DeSantis said.
DeSantis called this “a burden on society.”
“That absolutely kills the American Dream for young people. It’s not like it’s easy to afford a home anyways in your 20s. You have to save and make decisions. To now be paying the interest rates with where they are, it totally ruins things,” DeSantis said.
Why does this matter?
Daryl Fairweather, chief economist for Redfin, has said that President Joe Biden will be forced to make home affordability a cornerstone of his re-election bid.
“Even though the overall economy is strong, high housing costs are making many Americans feel poor,” Fairweather said in a recent release on housing predictions for 2024.
“Home prices are up more than 20% since President Biden took office. That’s a problem for his re-election bid: A recent poll found that 65% of voters disapprove of Biden’s handling of the economy, with lack of housing affordability likely a major factor,” she said.
Republicans gunning to beat Biden in November have their first test of the presidential election cycle during the caucus on Jan. 15 in Iowa. The presidential primary in New Hampshire will follow on Jan. 23.
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