Eye On Housing - A Blog from NAHB

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National Association of Home Builders Discusses Economics and Housing Policy
Updated: 57 min 36 sec ago

Gains in July U.S. Personal Income

Thu, 08/31/2017 - 12:30
Personal income increased 0.4% in July after showing virtually no change in the previous month, according to the most recent data release from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). This is the fastest growth since February 2017, as the wages and salaries maintained solid growth of 0.5% in July. Personal consumption expenditure rose by 0.3%, following upwardly revised 0.2% growth... Read More ›

Pending Sales Continue to Slide

Thu, 08/31/2017 - 10:53
The Pending Home Sales Index decreased in July for the fourth time in five months, and now has decreased year-over-year in three of the past four months. The Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI), a forward-looking indicator based on signed contracts reported by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), decreased 0.8% to 109.1 in July from a downwardly revised 110.0 in... Read More ›

Strong Q2 GDP Growth Confirmed

Thu, 08/31/2017 - 10:00
The pace of growth in the nation’s economy over the second quarter of 2017 was stronger than originally believed. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis within the U.S. Department of Commerce, real gross domestic product (GDP) is now estimated to have increased by a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 3.0 percent in the second quarter. The original or “advance”... Read More ›

Home Prices Grow in June

Tue, 08/29/2017 - 15:23
The Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, reported by S&P Dow Jones Indices, rose at a seasonally adjusted annual growth rate of 4.4% in June, faster than the 3.2% in April and the 3.7% in May. Home prices in nominal terms reached a new high and were 3% higher than the pre-recession peak. House price appreciation continued and averaged 4.5%... Read More ›

Property Tax Revenue Keeps Climbing

Tue, 08/29/2017 - 08:52
NAHB analysis of the Census Bureau’s quarterly tax data shows that $549 billion in taxes were paid by property owners over the four quarters ending in Q1 2017.[1] This represents an $8 billion—or 1.5%—increase over the previous trailing four quarters.  After slowing in three consecutive quarters, the growth rate of property tax receipts has now accelerated over the last two and remains robust... Read More ›

Modest Expansion for Residential Construction Loans

Mon, 08/28/2017 - 16:24
The volume of residential construction loans increased by 1.2% during the second quarter of 2017, marking 17 consecutive quarters of growth. However, the growth rate for lending since the end of 2016 has slowed. Tight availability of acquisition, development and construction (AD&C) loans has been a limiting factor for home building growth, but easing credit conditions and a growing loan base have helped expand residential construction activity in a thin inventory environment. According... Read More ›

July Existing Sales Slow Again

Thu, 08/24/2017 - 11:14
Despite gains in the West and South, existing home sales fell for a second consecutive month, declining 1.3 % in July, but remained 2.1% above the pace a year ago. Some 51% of homes sold last month were on the market less than a month as buyers overcame low inventory and higher prices. July inventory declined 1.0%, and is now... Read More ›

The Multifamily Production Index Bounces Back to Trend in Second Quarter

Thu, 08/24/2017 - 10:05
The Multifamily Production Index (MPI) climbed eight points to 56 in the second quarter of 2017, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). This quarter’s reading is the highest since the third quarter of 2015 (Figure 1). The MPI measures builder and developer sentiment about current conditions in the apartment and condominium market on a scale of 0... Read More ›

New Home Sales Falter After Encouraging Spring

Wed, 08/23/2017 - 12:20
According to the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, sales of new single-family homes fell 9.4 percent over the month of July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 571,000. Despite the declines, sales over the first seven months of 2017 are 9.2 percent above their level over the same period in 2016. The... Read More ›

Is the Multifamily Built-for-Rent Market Share Falling?

Wed, 08/23/2017 - 08:33
After reaching a share of 95% of all multifamily starts at the start of 2017, the market share of rental multifamily starts declined in the second quarter to 91%, according to NAHB analysis of Census data. In contrast, the historical low share of 47% was set during the third quarter of 2005, during the condo building boom. And an average... Read More ›

Slowdown for Single-Family Built-for-Rent Construction

Tue, 08/22/2017 - 08:34
The number of single-family homes built-for-rent appears to be slowing. Over the last four quarters, total production of this type of housing was 28,000 homes, compared to 35,000 during the four quarters prior. The slowing of this market, along with its relative small size, stands in contrast to public discussion concerning the overall size of the single-family rental market. According to... Read More ›

Gains for Custom Home Building

Mon, 08/21/2017 - 08:34
NAHB’s analysis of Census Data from the Quarterly Starts and Completions by Purpose and Design survey indicates ongoing expansion of the volume of custom home building but slight declines in terms of overall market share. Over the last four quarter period, ending with the second quarter of 2017, there were 1781,000 total custom single-family home starts, an increase of more... Read More ›

Many Construction Firms Need Only $5,000 to Start Their Businesses

Fri, 08/18/2017 - 08:30
Of 638,839 construction firms surveyed by the U.S. Census Bureau in its Annual Survey of Entrepreneurs (ASE), 20.1% report they raised less than $5,000 dollars to begin commercial activity. The ASE is a relatively new information source released by the U.S. Census Bureau this year. It collects economic and demographic information on businesses and business ownership in all major industries,... Read More ›

Townhouse Construction Flat

Thu, 08/17/2017 - 08:34
According to NAHB analysis of the most recent Census data of Starts and Completions by Purpose and Design, townhouse construction starts have slowed relative to the expansion of the overall building market. Over the last four quarters ending with the second quarter of 2017, townhouse starts totaled 94,000, 5% lower than the four quarters prior this past year. Townhouses, or... Read More ›

New Single-Family Home Size Trends Lower

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 12:24
After increasing and leveling off in recent years, new single-family home size continued along a general trend of decreasing size during the second quarter of 2017.  This change of the last two years marks a reversal of the trend that had been in place as builders focused on the higher end of the market during the recovery. As the entry-level market... Read More ›

Single-Family Starts Flat in July

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 09:41
The pace of single-family starts was effectively flat in July, after a strong rate was recorded in June. In contrast, the multifamily market continues to slow after multiple strong years. Total starts declined almost 5% in July to a 1.155 million seasonally adjusted annual rate, according to the joint data release from the Census Bureau and HUD. The headline decline... Read More ›

Builder Confidence Springs Back with Four-Point August Jump

Tue, 08/15/2017 - 10:02
Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes rose four points in August to a level of 68 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI). Builder sentiment is being supporting by ongoing job and economic growth, attractive mortgage rates, and growing consumer confidence. The fact that builder confidence has returned to the healthy levels... Read More ›

Share of Builders Reporting Labor Shortages Rises Again

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 08:26
Labor and subcontractor shortages have become even more widespread in July of 2017 than they were in June of 2016, according to single-family builders responding to special questions on the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) survey. The July 2017 HMI survey asked builders about shortages in 15 specific occupations that were either recommended by Home Builders Institute (NAHB’s workforce development arm)... Read More ›

Gypsum Prices Continue to Climb

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 16:17
The prices of gypsum, softwood lumber, and ready-mix concrete increased by 1.4%, 0.6%, and 0.3%, respectively, in July according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In contrast, the price paid for OSB fell 3.8%, its largest monthly decline since February 2016. Gypsum prices rose 1.4% in July following a 1.3% increase in June.  The... Read More ›

Housing Affordability Inches Lower in Second Quarter

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 10:15
Rising home prices offset a quarter-point drop in mortgage interest rates to move housing affordability slightly lower in the second quarter of 2017, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index (HOI).  In all, 59.4 percent of new and existing homes sold between the beginning of April and end of June were affordable to families... Read More ›