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WASHINGTON — As housing sales slow amid higher interest rates, thousands of workers who found jobs in the booming housing market of the pandemic are now facing widespread layoffs with steeper cuts expected ahead.  

Some of the biggest players in the real estate industry, including RE/MAX, Redfin and Wells Fargo, have announced layoffs in recent months totaling thousands of jobs. Industry analysts are projecting the cuts could eventually be on par with what was seen during the housing crash of 2008.


According to the National Association of Realtors, the number of homes being sold in the U.S. fell nearly 20% between August 2021 and August 2022 in large part because of the Federal Reserve’s decision to begin raising interest rates in March in an effort to bring down decades-high inflation. As a result, home mortgage interest rates have doubled this year, pricing an increasing number of buyers out of the market.

“It’s gonna be tough, layoffs are a common occurrence right now,” said Linda McCoy, head of the National Association of Mortgage Brokers, who has been in the mortgage industry for 30 years. “It’s scary, because you just don’t know where or when it’s going to stop.”