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New Home Sales Hold Steady in April

New Home Sales Hold Steady in April

In this recent article from the National Association of Home Builders, new home sales held steady in April, a welcome sign that the shutdown hasn't shut down the housing market. You can read the entire article below.

New Home Sales Hold Steady in April

In a sign that the housing market is stabilizing in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, sales of newly built, single-family homes rose 0.6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 623,000 units in April, according to newly released data by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau. The April rate is 6.2% lower than the April 2019 pace.

“The April data for new home sales show the potential for housing to lead any recovery for the overall economy,” said NAHB Chairman Dean Mon. “Because the housing industry entered this downturn underbuilt, there exists considerable pent-up housing demand on the sidelines. The experience of the virus mitigation has emphasized the importance of home for most Americans.”

“The April estimates from Census came in better than forecast, so there is a possibility of a downward revision in the next release,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “Nonetheless, the data matches recent commentary from builders and reflects recent gains in mortgage applications. Despite significant challenges in overall economic conditions, the months’ supply held steady at a reasonably healthy level of 6.3.”

A new home sale occurs when a sales contract is signed or a deposit is accepted. The home can be in any stage of construction: not yet started, under construction or completed. In addition to adjusting for seasonal effects, the April reading of 623,000 units is the number of homes that would sell if this pace continued for the next 12 months.

Inventory edged lower to a 6.3 months’ supply, with 325,000 new single-family homes for sale, 3% lower than April 2019. Of that total, just 78,000 are completed, ready to occupy. The median sales price was $303,900. The median price of a new home sale a year earlier was $339,000. Median prices were lower due to increased use of builder price incentives in April.

Regionally, new home sales were up 8.7% in the Northeast, 2.4% in the Midwest and 2.4% in the South. New home sales were down 6.3% in the West.

What Building 1,000 Homes Means to the U.S. Economy

What Building 1,000 Homes Means to the U.S. Economy

While this article from the National Association of Home Builders is referring to single family homes in its example, building townhouses or townhomes should be no different in impact. Home building of any kind is going to be a major contributor when it comes to restarting the economy, and it will help us all experience normal again. Continue reading the full article below.

What Building 1,000 Homes Means to the U.S. Economy

(NAHB), A new study from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) shows that housing stands poised to lead the economic rebound once social distancing and other virus mitigation efforts show success in containing the coronavirus pandemic.

Building 1,000 average single-family homes creates 2,900 full-time jobs and generates $110.96 million in taxes and fees for all levels of government to support police, firefighters and schools, according to NAHB’s National Impact of Home Building and Remodeling report. Similarly, building 1,000 average rental apartments generates 1,250 jobs and $55.91 million in taxes and revenue for local, state and federal government. Moreover, $10 million in remodeling expenditures creates 75 jobs and nearly $3 million in taxes.

“Before the coronavirus pummeled the U.S. economy, housing was on the rise with January and February new home sales numbers posting their highest reading since the Great Recession,” said NAHB Chairman Dean Mon, a home builder and developer from Shrewsbury, N.J. “The demand is clearly there, and as this study shows, we expect that housing will play its traditional role of helping to lead the economy out of recession later in 2020 when the pandemic subsides.”

The NAHB model shows that job creation through housing is broad-based. Building new homes and apartments generates jobs in industries that produce lumber, concrete, lighting fixtures, heating equipment and other products that go into a home remodeling project. Other jobs are generated in the process of transporting, storing and selling these products.

Additional jobs are generated for professionals such as architects, engineers, real estate agents, lawyers and accountants who provide services to home builders, home buyers and remodelers.

In another sign of the important role that housing plays in the economy, the Department of Homeland Security announced on March 28 that it had designated construction of single-family and multifamily housing as an “Essential Infrastructure Business,” meaning that construction could continue in places under stay-at-home orders. Although this designation is not binding to state and local governments, it does mean that there could be more workers on job sites in the coming weeks.

“Ensuring the health and safety of home builders and contractors is our top priority,” said Mon. “This is why NAHB and construction industry partners have developed a Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Plan specifically tailored to construction job sites. The plan is customizable and covers areas that include manager and worker responsibilities, job site protective measures, cleaning and disinfecting, responding to exposure incidents, and OSHA record-keeping requirements.”

The full National Impact of Home Building and Remodeling study can be found on nahb.org.

Builder Confidence in the 55+ Housing Market Drops Slightly in Fourth Quarter

In this recent article from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), many of the same issues are concerning to home builders - cost of materials and labor shortage. Demand in 55+ housing remains strong, but affordability continues to be a concern. Overall sentiment remains high, but these concerns have lowered builder confidence in the 55+ market by four points to 68 in the 4th quarter. Continue below for the full article.

Builder Confidence in the 55+ Housing Market Drops Slightly in Fourth Quarter

(NAHB)

Builder confidence in the single-family 55+ housing market dropped four points to 68 in the fourth quarter, according to the National Association of Home Builders' (NAHB) 55+ Housing Market Index (HMI) released today.

The 55+ HMI measures two segments of the 55+ housing market: single-family homes and multifamily condominiums. Each segment of the 55+ HMI measures builder sentiment based on a survey that asks if current sales, prospective buyer traffic and anticipated six-month sales for that market are good, fair or poor (high, average or low for traffic).

“Overall, builder and developer sentiment in the 55+ housing market remains positive,” said Harry Miller III, chairman of NAHB's 55+ Housing Industry Council and president of Regal Builders LLC in Dover, Del. “However, development costs and lack of labor are contributing to affordability concerns and preventing even more robust growth in the market.”

For the three index components of the 55+ single-family HMI, present sales fell five points to 73, expected sales for the next six months dropped two points to 75 and traffic of prospective buyers fell four points to 51.

The 55+ multifamily condo HMI rose five points to 58. All three index components posted increases from the previous quarter: Present sales rose four points to 60, expected sales for the next six months went up five points to 61 and traffic of prospective buyers increased six points to 53.

All four components of the 55+ multifamily rental market went up from the third quarter: Present production increased eight points to 65, future expected production jumped 11 points to 66, present demand increased 10 points to 82—a record high—and future expected demand rose nine points to 83—also a record high.

“Although down from a record-high previous three quarters, the 55+ HMI is still strong at 68 and is consistent with the gradual upward trend the index has shown since 2013,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “The strong performance of the 55+ indices for the multifamily market, meanwhile, is in line with the surge in multifamily starts at the end of 2019.”

For the full 55+ HMI tables, please visit nahb.org/55hmi.

Best in American Living™ Awards Showcase Top Design Trends for 2020

Best in American Living™ Awards Showcase Top Design Trends for 2020

Last month the National Association of Home Builders held their annual International Builders' Show in Las Vegas, NV. Of the highlights of the conventions the awards are always highly anticipated and these awards for Top Design Trends for 2020 are certainly noteworthy. PW&A did not attend the International Builders' Show this year, though we did last year. Continue reading below for the full article from the NAHB - Best in American Living™ Awards Showcase Top Design Trends for 2020.

(NAHB) 

Over 150 single-family, multifamily, interior design, remodeling and community projects were honored at the 2019 Best in American Living™ Awards (BALA) ceremony held during the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) International Builders’ Show in Las Vegas. The awards were sponsored by Monogram Appliances, and the media sponsor was Professional Builder.

Judges awarded eight Best in Region, five Of the Year and one Judges’ Discretionary Award for Innovative Site Design. In addition, one Game Changer award was given as well as one “Wow!” award, a special award given to a project with a jaw-dropping, one-of-a-kind design detail. These projects represent the nation’s best in home and community design, interior design and remodeling.

BALA winners showcase top design trends that home buyers can expect to see in homes and communities over the next several years, among them:

Colorful kitchens. Often found first on the island and then on lower cabinets, many designers are finding ways to punch up today’s new and remodeled kitchens. Judges saw cool aquas, dark woods and new, colored textures in many of this year’s applicants. It could take the form of a deep blue, on trend with many of 2020 color forecasts, or fun wallpaper, or earthy tones.

Crisp colors paired with warm woods. More designers are pairing otherwise “stark” or “cool” palettes with warm wood tones—either real wood or manmade—to create a look that is both dramatic, yet homey; high-end, yet comfy.

Curated design details. In every type of housing, from single- to multifamily, from remodels to communities, it’s clear that buyers want their next home to feel personalized to their taste. Every detail matters—from ceiling textures to shelving choices to mullion size—and today’s educated buyers won’t settle for less.

Expansive, large-format windows. Almost considered a standard feature in single-family custom homes, expansive, oversized windows—often with limited vertical interruptions—are on trend in all housing types. Even in denser areas, architects are finding interesting ways to incorporate large panel glass that lets in light but keeps out nearby neighbors.

High-quality signature entries. In our often car-centric society, residents spend a lot of time coming in through garages, but in 2020, expect to see a greater focus on front entries and improved streetscapes. A signature entry, especially on a production home, adds a one-of-a-kind appeal for future owners.

Non-traditional storage solutions. Instead of traditional cabinetry, designers will opt for shelving, both as a storage solution and as a design element. Outside of the kitchen, architects are creating more artful interpretations of traditional storage spaces, like wine cellars or under-stair displays. Artfully crafted, these storage areas purposefully blend into the room, instead of another typical closet door along a hallway.

Personalized lighting design. No matter the price point, buyers want a personalized feel to their homes, whether rental or for sale, and lighting is an obvious choice to offer that personalized feel. Lighting, like other design details, should not be an afterthought, and just installing what’s on hand without added thought about placement won’t fly with the 2020 buyer.

Sophisticated in/outdoor connections. With new technologies and increased availability of glass walls, pocket doors and large windows, new and remodeled homes alike are benefiting from seamless indoor/outdoor connections, both visually and physically.

Texture paradise. In 2020, designers are opting for more mixed metals, mixed materials and mixed textures to add depth to their designs. Wall paper, back on trend, is a great way to add additional texture to a space. Instead of full-room papering, designers are using wallpaper to create statement walls, focal oints or large pieces of art.

Thoughtful, well-edited design: Architects are pushing for more character and uniqueness, especially in production homes. Well-edited doesn’t necessarily equal simpler, but it does mean there needs to be a genuine purpose of place and points of interest that draw the eye across the façade—without all the fussiness of past decades. In plan, architects are making smart spatial decisions to match a cultural preference towards simplicity in living, especially in the age of constant technological interruptions and connections.

Unique wood detailing: The use of wood has been up-trending for the past couple of years, but in 2020, expect unique wood details and use of wood to create texture, ambiance, lighting design and more.

What’s old is new again: A renewed focus on genuine sense of place makes adaptive reuse and historic preservation projects a focus of 2020. By focusing on what came before, designers can build on an existing history instead of starting over, and residents will feel more connected to the place they now call home.

More information about this year’s winners and trends can be found at bestinamericanliving.com.

Builder Confidence Hits 20-Month High

Builder Confidence Hits 20-Month High

In this recent article from the National Association of Home Builders, builder confidence has hit a 20-month high for newly-built, single-family homes. Fueled in part by low mortgage rates, job growth and a reduction in new home inventory, builders remain confident that the industry will continue on its current trajectory barring any unforeseens. Builders continue to hold concerns about the ongoing supply side constraints and worry about a slowing economy. Read the complete article below.

Builder Confidence Hits 20-Month High

(NAHB), 

Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes rose three points to 71 in October, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) released today. Sentiment levels are at their highest point since February 2018.

“The housing rebound that began in the spring continues, supported by low mortgage rates, solid job growth and a reduction in new home inventory,” said NAHB Chairman Greg Ugalde, a home builder and developer from Torrington, Conn.

“The second half of 2019 has seen steady gains in single-family construction, and this is mirrored by the gradual uptick in builder sentiment over the past few months,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “However, builders continue to remain cautious due to ongoing supply side constraints and concerns about a slowing economy.”

Derived from a monthly survey that NAHB has been conducting for 30 years, the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sales expectations for the next six months as “good,” “fair” or “poor.” The survey also asks builders to rate traffic of prospective buyers as “high to very high,” “average” or “low to very low.” Scores for each component are then used to calculate a seasonally adjusted index where any number over 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor.

All the HMI indices posted gains in October. The HMI index gauging current sales conditions increased three points to 78, the component measuring sales expectations in the next six months jumped six points to 76 and the measure charting traffic of prospective buyers rose four points to 54.

Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Northeast posted a one-point gain to 60, the Midwest was up a single point to 58, the South registered a three-point increase to 73 and the West was also up three points to 78.

Editor's Note: The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index is strictly the product of NAHB Economics, and is not seen or influenced by any outside party prior to being released to the public. HMI tables can be found atnahb.org/hmi. More information on housing statistics is also available at housingeconomics.com.

 

Builder Confidence Hits Yearly High in September

Builder Confidence Hits Yearly High in September

In this recent article from the National Association of Home Builders, builder confidence remains high for newly-built single-family homes, fueled in part by lower interest rates and steady demand. A shortage of land/lots and labor continues to be an issue for builders, however. Continue reading the full article below.

Builder Confidence Hits Yearly High in September

(NAHB), Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes rose one point to 68 in September from an upwardly revised August reading of 67, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) released today. Sentiment levels have held in the mid- to upper 60s since May and September’s reading matches the highest level since last October.

“Low interest rates and solid demand continue to fuel builders’ sentiments even as they continue to grapple with ongoing supply-side challenges that hinder housing affordability, including a shortage of lots and labor,” said NAHB Chairman Greg Ugalde, a home builder and developer from Torrington, Conn.

“Solid household formations and attractive mortgage rates are contributing to a positive builder outlook,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “However, builders are expressing growing concerns regarding uncertainty stemming from the trade dispute with China. NAHB’s Home Building Geography Index indicates that the slowdown in the manufacturing sector is holding back home construction in some parts of the nation, although there is growth in rural and exurban areas.”

Derived from a monthly survey that NAHB has been conducting for 30 years, the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index gauges builder perceptions of current single-family home sales and sales expectations for the next six months as “good,” “fair” or “poor.” The survey also asks builders to rate traffic of prospective buyers as “high to very high,” “average” or “low to very low.” Scores for each component are then used to calculate a seasonally adjusted index where any number over 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor.

The HMI index gauging current sales conditions increased two points to 75 and the component measuring traffic of prospective buyers held steady at 50. The measure charting sales expectations in the next six months fell one point to 70.

Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Northeast posted a two-point gain to 59, the West was also up two points to 75 and the South moved one point higher to 70. The Midwest was unchanged at 57.

Editor's Note: The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index is strictly the product of NAHB Economics, and is not seen or influenced by any outside party prior to being released to the public. HMI tables can be found at nahb.org/hmi. More information on housing statistics is also available at housingeconomics.com.