• Existing Home Sales Reached 14-year High in 2020 January 22, 2021
    As demand continues to be driven by low mortgage rates and a suburban shift for home-buying preference, existing home sales, as reported by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), ticked up in December and the annual sales tally reached the highest level since 2006. But surging house prices and inventory shortage could limit demand and […]
    Fan-Yu Kuo
  • How Affordable is the New Home Premium? January 22, 2021
    Earlier we published a post highlighting lower operating costs per dollar value for new homes. This post takes the analysis a step further and shows that home buyers can afford to pay a 36% premium for a new single-family detached house, compared to the one built before 1960, simply because it is new and has […]
    Natalia Siniavskaia
  • Housing Starts Ends 2020 Strong January 21, 2021
    Total housing starts posted a 5.8 percent increase in December (1.67 million units) compared to an upwardly revised November estimate of 1.58 million units according to the joint data release from the Census Bureau and HUD. Relative to December 2019, total starts are 5.2 percent above the annual pace of 1.59 million units. Single-family starts […]
    Danushka Nanayakkara-Skillington
  • Confidence in Remodeling is Strong Despite COVID-19 January 21, 2021
    The National Association of Home Builders’ (NAHB) Remodeling Market Index (RMI) posted a reading of 79 in the fourth quarter of 2020. The reading indicates remodelers’ confidence in their markets, for projects of all sizes, despite the ongoing negative impacts of the coronavirus pandemic (Table 1). The RMI is based on a survey asking remodelers […]
    Shea Krekorian
  • Builder Confidence Down on Rising Material Prices, Upsurge in COVID-19 Cases January 20, 2021
    Rising material costs led by a huge upsurge in lumber prices, along with a resurgence of the coronavirus across much of the nation pushed builder confidence in the market for newly built single-family homes down three points to 83 in January, according to the latest NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI). Despite the drop, builder […]
    Robert Dietz
  • Continued Gains for November Single-Family Permits January 19, 2021
    Over the first eleven months of 2020, total single-family permits issued year-to-date (YTD) nationwide reached 888,217. On a year-over-year (YoY) basis, this is an 12.2% increase over the November 2019 level of 791,452. Year-to-date ending in November, single-family permits across the four regions ranged from an increase of 14.4% in the South to an increase […]
    Danushka Nanayakkara-Skillington
  • U.S. Population Growth Slows: Many States See Decline January 18, 2021
    According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the Annual Resident Population of the United States as of July 1, 2020 was estimated at 329.5 million, increasing by 1.2 million from the previous year. In 2020, the Census estimated a growth rate of 0.35% on a national level, making the fifth consecutive year of a decline for […]
    Litic Murali
  • Led by Lumber, Building Materials Prices Climb 5.4% in 2020 January 15, 2021
    Prices paid for goods used in residential construction ex-energy rose 0.7% in December (not seasonally adjusted) and ended the year 5.4% higher than they stood in December 2019, according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Building materials (i.e., inputs to residential construction less food and energy) prices […]
    David Logan
  • Operation Costs per Dollar Value Lower for New Homes January 15, 2021
    New NAHB research based on the latest 2019 American Housing Survey (AHS) shows that, on average, homeowners spend around $9,240 per year to operate and maintain a single-family detached home. This includes property taxes, insurance, maintenance and utilities, with property taxes being the costliest component. Annual operating costs increase consistently with household income, home size […]
    Natalia Siniavskaia
  • Jobless Claims Jump to 965,000 January 14, 2021
    During the week ending January 9, weekly initial jobless claims soared to 965,000, the highest level since mid-August 2020. Continuing claims, which lag initial jobless claims by one week, rose by 199,000 in the week ending January 2. The labor market is struggling to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic as many states tighten business restrictions […]
    Jing Fu