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Which House of Cards will Fall First ?

There has been one sector that has seen a boom throughout the globe in the last two years at an unprecedented pace and that has been the housing sector which includes both ownership and rental. Due to the policy of working from home and many people's affordability increasing thanks to cheap mortgages without any credit rating issues due to moratoriums, there is now a bubble in every aspect of the sector.

Many people started house-flipping as the sale of ready houses was booming, leaving these flippers with a good amount of profit margin on such transactions in a short period. But now their nightmare scenario becomes reality as the mortgage rates all over the world rise much faster and scrutiny of new applications increases. For instance, USA mortgage rates are already at 13 year high of 5.27%. This will result in the flippers not being able to sell the house quickly and also the value of the house will start to decrease bringing a double negative impact to their books.

On the other end of the sector, the residential rentals have been rising for two years but the rate has accelerated in the last three to four months as the "normal" way of life is on the horizon. But this has resulted in many landlords with empty houses, as the renewal of these agreements did not go through. Thus, creating a cash outgo for the landlord till a new tenant is signed with a risk of a rental correction in that period.

All these factors with a combination of constant and aggressive rate hikes will squeeze the liquidity available to the market and it will eventually trigger some forced selling as it did during the global financial crisis.

Remember, the reason for asset prices to correct can be different but the price cycles and human behaviours to these cycles make it obvious and the same in the long run.


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