With mortgage rates hovering close to 8% — and interest rates, more broadly, at similar heights — businesses and households alike are finding present financial conditions hard to navigate. If you’re a first-time home buyer, is now a good time to buy? Should you rent instead? If you own a business, should you wait to take out a loan? We convened several finance and economics experts to offer some tips for navigating these tricky financial conditions.
“With interest rates being what they are, there’s a lot less movement of people around mortgages and housing right now,” says Andrés Shahidinejad, an assistant professor of economics and finance at Northeastern University. “All of a sudden, the idea of renting has become, relatively speaking, more attractive than buying,” he says.
During periods of high inflation, conventional wisdom suggests that raising interest rates will help tamp down demand and, therefore, drive prices down. But in the current housing market, the story is more complicated. “You would generally expect that, with higher interest rates, prices would be coming down,” Shahidinejad says.