If you want an accurate read of how many interested home buyers are active in the housing market right now, you can’t do much better than a measure of appointments to view available homes. The number of showings potential buyers set up provides a pretty good snapshot of how much demand there is from qualified buyers. And, according to ShowingTime’s Showing Index – which tracks appointments to view homes – there’s a lot. “Showing activity continued to increase overall as we moved into 2018, with several markets outpacing the National Index,” ShowingTime’s chief analytics officer, Danii Cherkasskiy, said. “Some areas in the South region saw relative increases in showing activity in January, compensating for the slowdowns experienced in the fourth quarter due to Hurricane Irma.” Overall, showings were up 5.2 percent year-over-year in January – a good indication that buyer demand will remain elevated this year. Among the reasons prospective home buyers are active right now, still-low mortgage rates, a stronger job market, and growing economic stability top the list. More here.