Significantly higher mortgage rates are preventing a massive number of homeowners from selling their homes, and the trend has only grown more problematic recently. In August there were 30% fewer FOR-SALE signs than the average prior to COVID, more than 1,000 missing sellers. The trend of fewer sellers coming to market has prevented the active inventory from growing and reaching pre-pandemic levels. If the typical number of homeowners would have come on the market this year, more sellers would have accumulated on the market and the increased competition would have led to a larger erosion of home values. It is yet another twist in this wild post-pandemic housing market. “Hunkering down,” an unexpected trend that emerged this year and appears to be here to stay until there is forced selling down the road or mortgage rates fall back down to earth.