Rising House Prices Spurring Home Building

Washington, DC, April 26, 2013 -- Buoyed by rising home prices throughout much of the nation, both single-family and multifamily housing starts are expected to post double-digit gains over last year in 2013, according to the National Association of Home Builders.

However, headwinds continue to hold back stronger growth as the housing recovery evolves, according to economists at NAHB’s Spring 2013 Construction Forecast Conference Webinar.

“The broadening housing expansion is evidenced by the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index, which now lists 273 metros areas out of a universe of 361, or three-quarters of the metropolitan areas in the U.S.,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.

The recent surge is almost all due to improvements in house prices across a broader number of markets, he added. Home price increases became more solid and consistent in 2012, and the latest data shows a nearly 6 percent annual rate of home price appreciation on a national basis.

Growth in the housing sector is rising at a much faster pace than the overall economy during this phase of the recovery, Crowe added. The residential fixed investment component of GDP was up 17.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012 whereas total economic output only registered a 0.4 percent gain.

As demand for housing gradually picks up steam, supply chains for building materials, developed lots and skilled workers will take some time to re-establish themselves in the aftermath of the Great Recession.

Meanwhile, builders are feeling pinched by rising costs of key building components (prices of gypsum, softwood lumber and concrete are all above 90 percent of their housing boom peak), which is causing home construction costs to rise at a faster pace than appraised values, Crowe said.

Moreover, ongoing difficulties in obtaining construction credit, overly restrictive mortgage lending rules and uncertainty in Washington regarding the future of housing financial regulations and housing tax incentives, including the mortgage interest deduction and Low Income Housing Tax Credit, threaten to dampen consumer confidence and future housing demand.

Meanwhile, NAHB’s Multifamily Production Index, a leading indicator for the multifamily market, has jumped 38 points in the past four years and now stands at 54. For the past three quarters, the index has been above the critical tipping point of 50, where a reading of 50 means that an equal number of builders view conditions in the multifamily market as good and bad.

Multifamily starts are expected to rise to 334,000 units in 2013, up 35 percent from last year’s 247,000 level, bringing production back to the baseline level that is needed to keep the supply in balance with demand. Multifamily starts are anticipated to rise an additional 5 percent next year to 349,000 units.

The single-family market, which must make up the most ground to return to its 2000-2003 level of normal production (1.3 million units), continues to make steady gains. NAHB is forecasting 672,000 single-family housing starts in 2013, up 23 percent from the 534,000 units recorded last year. Single-family production is expected to rise an additional 28 percent in 2014, to 858,000 units.



Other Archived Articles

Former Starnet Chairman Wins Mayoral Election   Full Article
Point Pleasant, NJ, Nov. 7, 2014 -- Former Starnet chairman Bob Sabosik won his bid for mayor in Tuesday's elections in Point Pleasant.

Mohawk CEO Lorberbaum Discusses Firm's Growth   Full Article
Chattanooga, TN, Nov. 7, 2014 -- Mohawk Industries CEO Jeff Lorberbaum told the Chattanooga Rotary Club that his firm is investing $500 million in its existing businesses in a bet on an improving economy.

Economy Adds 214K Jobs, Unemployment Falls   Full Article
Washington, DC, Nov. 7, 2014 -- Employers added 214,000 jobs in October and the unemployment rate fell again, the Labor Department said.

Attendance at Cersaie Rises This Year   Full Article
Bologna, Italy, Nov. 7, 2014 -- Attendance at Cersaie 2014, the international exhibition of ceramic tile and bathroom furnishings held in Bologna in September, once again topped 100,000 visits, according to organizers.

Builders More Confident in Senior Housing Market   Full Article
Washington, DC, Nov. 7, 2014 -- Builder confidence in the 55+ housing market was up again in the third quarter, according to the latest release of NAHB’s 55+ Housing Market Index.

Housing Markets Improving at a Gradual Pace   Full Article
Washington, DC, Nov. 6, 2014 -- Markets in 59 of the approximately 350 metro areas nationwide returned to or exceeded their last normal levels of economic and housing activity in the third quarter.

Planned Job Cuts Surge in October   Full Article
Chicago, IL, Nov. 6, 2014 -- Planned job cuts jumped 68% in October to the second-highest total this year, according to outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas.

Initial Jobless Claims Fall Again   Full Article
Washington, DC, Nov. 6, 2014 -- Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell by 10,000 to 278,000 in the week ended Nov. 1, the Labor Department said

Grosser Named Tile Person of Year   Full Article
San Antonio, TX, Nov. 6, 2014 -- Tile Council of North America presented its Tile Person of the Year award to Donato Grosser at the Total Solutions Plus event.

NWFA Renews Agreement With Wildlife Fund   Full Article
St. Louis, MO, Nov. 6, 2014 -- The National Wood Flooring Association said it has renewed its Memorandum of Understanding with the World Wildlife Fund.

Tarkett Hosts Second Sustainability Summit   Full Article
Chagrin Falls, OH, Nov. 6, 2014 -- Tarkett recently hosted its second annual Sustainability Summit in Cleveland, Ohio.

Gerflor Acquires Connor Sport Court   Full Article
Chicago, IL, Nov. 5, 2014 -- Gerflor said it has acquired Connor Sport Court of Amasa, Michigan.

Armstrong Illinois Plant Wins Sustainability Award   Full Article
Lancaster, PA, Nov. 5, 2014 -- Armstrong Flooring said its Kankakee, Illinois manufacturing facility has received the 2014 Illinois Governor’s Sustainability Award.

Services Sector Continues To Grow in October   Full Article
Washington, DC, Nov. 5, 2014 -- The services sector of the economy continued to expand in October but at a slower pace, according to the Institute for Supply Management.

Mortgage Applications Fall Last Week   Full Article
Washington, DC, Nov. 5, 2014 -- Mortgage application volume fell last week as interest rates increased, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Businesses Add 230,000 Jobs in October   Full Article
Roseland, NJ, Nov. 5, 2014 -- Private employers added 230,000 jobs in October, payroll processor ADP said.

Earthwerks Names Head of Product Development   Full Article
Houston, TX, Nov. 5, 2014 -- Earthwerks has named Lindsey Nisbet head of product development and marketing strategy.

Linron Names de Beaumont VP Business Development   Full Article
Houston, TX, Nov. 5, 2014 -- Linron Co. has named Gilles de Beaumont, vice president of business development.

Domotex Asia Anticipates Larger Wood, Laminate Area   Full Article
Shanghai, China, Nov. 4, 2014 -- It will require four dedicated halls to house just the wood and laminate exhibitions at Domotex asia/Chinafloor’s 17th annual flooring show March 24-26 in Shanghai, organizers said.

Factory Orders Decline in September   Full Article
Washington, DC, Nov. 4, 2014 -- New orders for manufactured goods fell for second straight month in September on softness in the aircraft sector.