News & Opinions
The latest news and insights from Hanley Wood’s outspoken experts and key thought-leaders throughout the residential and commercial design and construction industry.
Frank Anton / BUILDER / July 24, 2013
Some analysts are all aflutter about rising mortgage rates and a decline in existing home sales. Builders and buyers, not so much.
Yes, rates are up, and higher rates make housing less affordable. Couple that with housing price increases in many markets, and affordability is taking the old one, two.
Nonetheless, just last week the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index jumped 6 points to 57, the highest reading since January 2006. On top of that, the component of the Index that gauges builders’ sales expectations for the next 6 months gained 7 points to 67, the strongest reading since…2005!Read More
Frank Anton / BUILDER / May 23, 2013
In 2012, for the first time ever, the top 100 builders in the country accounted for about 50% of all new home closings (see chart). Even more surprising is this: the top 10 builders alone accounted for almost 30% of new home closings nationwide. (In Tucson they accounted for a whopping 77%!)
Yes, that kind of concentrated market power is unprecedented. But, given the big builders’ access to capital, their strong land positions and their purchasing power with building product manufacturers, many housing analysts expected them to flex their muscles coming out of the Great Recession, particularly
Frank Anton / Hanley Wood / April 22, 2013
When it comes to housing, I’m an information junkie. Want proof?
I regularly collect housing reports, and I don’t just collect the reports, I read them. Why? Well, I’m looking for data points and analysis that will make me more confident that I really know where housing is headed. Lately, most of what I’ve read suggests that housing is headed in the right direction, and I was feeling pretty good. But then this week I was surprised to read that NAHB’s Homebuilder’s Index, which basically indicates whether builders are optimistic or pessimistic, took a dip.Read More
Frank Anton / BUILDER / April 16, 2013
For as long as I can remember (which is about 40 years) builders and Realtors have had an uneasy arm’s-length relationship.
And that really doesn’t make sense. For at least 2 reasons. One, real estate agents are involved in 9 out of 10 home purchases. And, two, builders and agents could both benefit every time a new home is sold.
As it is, however, not even 1 in 5 agents would recommend a new home over an existing home. That’s just one of the findings of a recent survey of 4000 real estate agents. The survey also showed that agents think older homes offer greater value, are better built,Read More
Frank Anton / BUILDER / April 3, 2013
The housing industry could use a modern-day version of the original king of low-cost housing.
Not surprisingly the homeownership rate of Americans with family incomes of more than $50,000 is higher than the homeownership rate of families with lower incomes. (An aside: 90% of households with incomes greater than $150,000 own a home!) And not surprisingly most builders target higher-income buyers, which is one reason the median price of a new home is about $230,000 and was as high as $270,000 in 2005.
I bet Bill Levitt, were he alive today, would see the situation as an opportunity. Remember,Read More