Historically low mortgage rates are a crucial component of record affordability for home buyers, but lack of confidence in the market and fear of further price declines are challenges that are outweighing that factor, Credit Suisse analysts wrote Wednesday.

Credit Suisse said its affordability index is at an all-time low at 13.4% in 3Q10 compared to 14.9% in both 3Q09 and 2Q10. The index tracks the monthly mortgage payment on the median-priced home relative to median income and has a 17-year average of 20%.

Subscribe Now

Access to a full range of industry content, analysis and expert commentary.

30-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Access coverage of the securitization marketplace, including breaking news updated throughout the day.