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State & National Updates Archives for 2017-01

Economics

 

Builders Confident as Year Begins

Members hopeful regulatory burdens will be eased.

 

December Starts up 11.3% on Multifamily Surge

Single-family production posted solid gains in 2016.

 

Industry Insight

 

NAHB Congratulates Donald Trump on Becoming 45th President

Home builders will work with new administration and Congress to promote pro-housing policies.

 

Coalition Launches Skilled Labor Fund

Goal is to attract and train residential construction workers.

 

Big Wins on 2017 Construction General Permits

However, liability concerns remain.

 

Top 5 Roadblocks to Cost-Effective Green Infrastructure 

Builders polled say regulatory constraints top the list.

 

New Product Offers Agents a Safer Option When Showing Homes

Innovative, award-winning service boosts leads and allows buyers to tour on their own, at their convenience.

 

 


Industry Insight

 

Where is Housing Headed?

Economists predict a gradual, upward trajectory but headwinds persist.

 

New-Home Buyers Prefer Amenities over Size

Survey shows that suburbs still reign. 

 

New Cost of Business Study a Must-Read for Remodelers

Report assesses profit margins, growth and demographics of industry.

 

Inside Washington

 

A Fast Start on Regulatory Reform

House approves third major regulatory relief bill.

 

FHA Lowers Annual Mortgage Insurance Premiums

Reduced rates will save FHA-insured home owners $500 in 2017.

 

Resolution to Vacate WOTUS Rule Introduced in Senate

In a related development, the Supreme Court will take up court jurisdiction on the issue.

 

International Builders' Show

 

2017 Kicks Off on a High Note 

Exhibit floors marked by heavy traffic.

 

Leadership Team Set

Texas builder Granger MacDonald elected as 2017 NAHB Chairman.

 

 


Rising Rates a Challenge for 2017

 

Economic conditions continue to mirror market reactions to the post-election environment. For example, the 10-year Treasury rate has risen from 1.8% in early November to approximately 2.4% this week. Rates escalated on the prospects of increased growth in a tight labor market. This higher cost of capital has pushed up mortgage rates (30-year fixed-rate mortgages jumped from 3.5% to 4.2% in recent months). And rising rates have already had an affect on pending homes sales which decreased 2.5% in November, 0.4% lower than a year ago.

 

However, it is important to keep in mind that rising rates are the result of improving economic growth prospects. Similar to the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index, many market measures are showing post-election strength. For example, consumer confidence increased in December to the highest level since 2001. These trends reflect the broader economic challenge for 2017: a delicate balance of improved growth prospects and rising interest rates.

 

–NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz

 

Economic Insights

Consumer Confidence Reaches Post-Recession High

Assessments of current conditions declined but consumers are optimistic for the near future.

 

Employment Situation – Good Enough

Payroll employment rose by 156,000 in December.

 

FOMC December Meeting – The Devil is in the Details

Federal Open Market Committee members note the pace of economic growth will depend on several key policy changes from the Trump administration. 

 

Housing Trends

 

Age of Housing Stock by State

Median ages of homes range from as young as 20 years (Nevada) to as old as 57 years (New York).

 

Mortgage Rates Climb

Average rates on all loans increased in November from 3.60% to 3.64%.

 

Market Growth Expected Following Modest Construction Pace

Aging housing stock signals growing demand for remodeling projects and new construction.

 

Starts and Sales

 

Home Price Gains Continued in October

Tight inventory and high demand brought prices back to pre-recession levels.

 

Pending Sales Retreat

Index level drops to its lowest level in almost a year.

 

Single-Family Construction Up in November

Though total private residential construction spending slipped to an annual rate of $462.9 billion.