USA: New home sales strengthen in May

The new home sector in the USA is strengthening ahead of the summer, according to new figures.

Data from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the US Census Bureau shows that new home sales rose 2.9 per cent in May. Transactions totalled a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 610,000 units after an upwardly revised April reading.

Regionally, new home sales increased 13.3 per cent in the West and 6.2 per cent in the South. Sales fell 10.8 per cent in the Northeast and 25.7 per cent in the Midwest. Overall, though, the average increase is a confidence booster for the construction of homes, as economic conditions stimulate demand from buyers.

“We are seeing solid overall growth in new home sales this year,” says Granger MacDonald, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders and a home builder and developer from Kerrville, Texas. “Sales are up more than 12 percent from this time last year, and we expect continued gains throughout 2017.”

“This month’s report is in line with our forecast, and consistent with solid builder confidence readings,” adds NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “With more consumers entering the market, further job growth and tight existing home inventory, the new home sector should continue to expand.”

 

New home sales rise in the US

27th March 2017

Sales of new-build homes in the USA rose 6.1 per cent in February 2017.

New figures from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the US Census Bureau show that sales of new single-family homes continue to grow in 2017, climbing to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 592,000 units last month.

“February’s increase in new home sales is consistent with builders’ growing confidence in the housing market,” comments Granger MacDonald, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders and a home builder and developer from Kerrville, Texas. “Builders are encouraged by heightened consumer activity and by the expectation that regulatory costs will decline in the year ahead.”

The inventory of new home sales for sale was 266,000 in February, which is a 5.4-month supply at the current sales pace. The median sales price of new houses sold was $296,200.

Regionally, new home sales increased 30.9 percent in the Midwest, 7.5 percent in the West and 3.6 percent in the South. Sales fell 21.4 percent in the Northeast.

“The uptick in mortgage interest rates is having a minimal effect on new home sales thus far,” adds NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “Ongoing job creation, rising household formations and affordable home prices should keep the market on an upward trajectory in 2017.”

 

New US home sales slip in October

5th December 2016

Sales of new homes fell in the USA this October.

The latest official figures from the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the US Census Bureau show that sales of newly built, single-family homes slipped 1.9 per cent from a downwardly revised September reading to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 563,000 units.

Regionally, new home sales fell 9.1 per cent in the Northeast, 13.7 per cent in the Midwest and 3 per cent in the South. Sales increased 8.8 per cent in the West.

However, despite the monthly dip, new home sales have been on an upward trend since last year, notes Ed Brady, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders. The mood, meanwhile, is broadly positive, according to a recent survey by the NAHB.

The inventory of new home sales for sale was 246,000 in October, which is a 5.2-month supply at the current sales pace. The median sales price of new houses sold was $304,500.

“Builders are adding to inventory based on consistent gains in sales, solid builder confidence and ongoing job and economic growth,” adds NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz.

 

Developers positive about US housing market prospects

22nd November 2016

Developers are positive about the prospects for the US housing market.

Housing starts across the USA enjoyed a strong October, with starts surging 25.5 per cent to an annual rate of 1.32 million units, led by both single-family and multifamily production, according to the US Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Commerce Department.

Single-family starts reached their highest level since October 2007, while multifamily production jumped 68.8 per cent from the previous month. Single-family starts rose 10.7 per cent in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 869,000 units, while multifamily production climbed 68.8 percent to 454,000 units.
Combined single- and multifamily starts posted double-digit gains in all four regions in October.

Separate research from the National Association of Home Builders highlights the upbeat sentiment among US homebuilders, with the Multifamily Production Index (MPI) rising three points in Q3 2016. The MPI measures builder and developer sentiment about current conditions in the apartment and condominium market.

“Overall, multifamily developers remain positive about the market,” comments Andrew Chaban, CEO of Princeton Properties in Lowell, Mass., and chairman of NAHB’s Multifamily Council. “However, in some areas of the country developers have to overcome challenges of labor and lot shortages to meet demand.”

“This quarter’s MPI reading is consistent with our projection that the multifamily housing sector will have a strong year in 2017,” adds NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “The multifamily sector has led the housing recovery and should continue to be supported by favorable demographics.”

NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz warns that October’s rate of growth are unsustainable, but nonetheless forecasts continued growth in the months ahead.

“A firming job market, a growing economy and rising household formations will keep the housing recovery on track into next year,” agrees Ed Brady, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder and developer from Bloomington, Ill.

 

Trump win boosts US construction

16th November 2016

Donald Trump’s election victory has boosted sentiment in the US construction industry.

Shares of building firms jumped on the morning following the historic political win, reports MarketWatch. Vulcan Materials, which makes cement and asphalt, saw its shares rise 10 per cent, its biggest one-day increase since 1972, while Martin Marrietta Materials also saw its shares jump 12 per cent.

Bill Sandbrook, CEO of US Concrete, told CNN that he voted for Trump in the belief that he had a better plan to fix the USA’s infrastructure.

“There hasn’t been enough political will to increase funding. Washington needed an outsider and oversized personality to not just talk about infrastructure but to get it funded and enacted,” he comments. “It’s not going to be a cakewalk. But I’m optimistic.”

The firm currently expects to generate $1.2 billion in sales this year, providing materials to construction firms in San Francisco, New York, Washington DC, and more.

Trump has made headlines with his controversial campaign talk of building a wall along the USA’s border with Mexico, as part of an anti-immigration stance. The President-elect, though, has also spoken of boosting public infrastructure spending, fixing roads and bridges.

Confidence in the USA’s home-building sector was also holding steady in the run-up to the election, with the National Association of Home Builders’ latest index ranking at the same positive level in November as the previous month.

“With most of our members responding before the November elections, confidence levels remained unchanged as they awaited the results,” says NAHB Chairman Ed Brady, a home builder and developer from Bloomington, Ill. “Still, builder sentiment has held well above 60 for the past three months, indicating that the single-family housing sector continues to show slow, gradual growth.”

“Ongoing job creation, rising incomes and attractive mortgage rates are supporting demand in the single-family housing sector. This will help keep housing on a steady, upward glide path in the months ahead,” adds NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz.

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