State & National Updates Archives for 2017-02
Stalled negotiations, short supply means costs may go up 30% by April.
EPA's 2017 Construction General Permit is now in effect.
Starts & Stats
Overall housing market fundamentals remain strong.
A seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.246 million starts is a return to trend.
Housing Opportunity Index dipped last quarter.
The NAHB Advantage
NAHB resources help you help your city find other ways to finance infrastructure.
NAHB members saved $20 million in 2016 with these exclusive discounts.
Watch videos from the board presentations and read committee meeting recaps at your convenience.
In a nutshell: Too many regulations and not enough lots.
Meanwhile, the share of new homes with FHA loans declines.
Managing expectations leads to satisfied customers.
NAHB cites confusion, cost and extra bureaucracy; the feds agree.
Builders to Confront Labor, Financing Challenges
More than 80% of builders surveyed say that the scarcity of labor leads the list of challenges for 2017. While employment is growing within the housing industry—adding 128,000 jobs over the last year, and 20,030 in January alone—unfilled construction jobs remain a key supply-side headwind. Housing markets also continue to be held back by a lack of inventory, which has kept pending existing home sales flat for most of the last two years.
The rising cost of credit is another point of concern as the new year begins. Federal Reserve data indicate that demand for multifamily debt and commercial real estate construction and development loans slowed or declined at the end of 2016, perhaps due to rising interest rates. New home sales were also down in December, which some analysts attribute to higher mortgage rates. However, regional data do not fully support that claim.
While rising rates will act as a drag on housing demand going forward, sales were up 12% over the course of 2016 and favorable demographics will cause sales to rise more in 2017, supported by rising wages and job growth.
–NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz
Improved economic conditions help ease lending conditions for conventional loans.
However, the pace of tightening has eased slightly after it peaked in mid-2016.
Economic conditions are right for a faster pace of monetary policy normalization.
Increasing rates too rapidly will likely impact sales.
House prices are the lone bright spot amid lagging single-family permits and employment numbers.
Tight inventory and high demand pushed prices up at a rapid pace.
A 50-year low has been followed by two consecutive quarters of increases.
A strong year overall, despite a weak December estimate.
January's fast pace is an encouraging sign for 2017.
Builders report increases in current sales, expected sales and prospective buyers.
Three consecutive monthly increases in spending add momentum at the start of a new year.
A slight drop brings total contributions to 15.6%.
Solid report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics starts off the year.
Optimism about current conditions is overshadowed by low expectations for the future.
Real GDP grew at a 1.9% annual rate, slowing from 3.5% in the previous quarter.
Products & Trends
See what today's buyers are looking for.
New report highlights the latest products and features consumers want most.
Builders adjust layouts to match buyer preferences.
Hint: It's unchanged from last year.
Make your company the builder of choice in your local market.
Successful strategies to get students excited about careers in construction.
OSB prices led the way, surging 13.8%.
New Jersey has the highest average annual real estate tax bill.
However, 2016 sales posted the highest rate since 2007.
NAHB will encourage HUD to reinstate the premium reduction.