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.
Robert Dietz / NAHB / October 3, 2013
Housing is an important source of economic growth. As of the second quarter of 2013, housing’s share of gross domestic product (GDP) was 15.6%, with home building yielding 3.1 percentage points of that total.
Housing-related activities contribute to GDP in two basic ways.
The first is through residential fixed investment (RFI). RFI is effectively the measure of the home building and remodeling contribution to GDP. It includes construction of new single-family and multifamily structures, residential remodeling, production of manufactured homes and brokers’ fees. For the secondRead More
Nick Timiraos / The Wall Street Journal / October 1, 2013
Fear that the housing market’s recovery is stalling has been overdone, say economists at Goldman Sachs in a new report.
The paper — entitled “Where is the pent-up housing demand?” — suggests that housing demand among the young has been suppressed due to cyclical issues not structural ones.
Homeownership hasn’t fallen out of favor and student-debt levels aren’t the main culprits for lower housing demand among young buyers, write economists Hui Shan and Eli Hackel. Instead, they suggest that the economic downturn is most responsible for muted homeownership gains among youngerRead More
Rocio Sanchez-Moyano / Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies / September 26, 2013
With the continued growth of house prices across the country, talk of a housing bubble is beginning to reappear in the headlines. House price-to-income ratios are often used to indicate a bubble, as prices have historically had a relatively stable relationship with incomes (both mean and median). In the US, nationally, the price-to-income ratio remained relatively stable throughout the 1990s. It began to increase around 2000 and surpassed its long-run average of 3.65 by 2002 (Figure 1). The national price-to-income ratio continued to increase in the mid-2000s, reaching a high ofRead More
Jonathan Smoke / Hanley Wood / September 25, 2013
The headline from the Commerce Department report on new home sales this morning was that August delivered a 7.9% increase over July. The Commerce Department numbers for August surprised analysts just like the existing home sales data last week because it seems that many folks have bought into the idea that rising interest rates are choking off the nascent housing recovery. Once again I stand by the opinion that no conclusive data exist that show we are seeing sales decline. The only declines we are seeing consistently are typical seasonal declines in activity.
Our more detailed insightsRead More
Robert Dietz / NAHB / September 23, 2013
While the sources of finance for new home sales have changed noticeably since the start of the Great Recession, cash sales remain more common for existing homes compared to new construction.
According to data from the Census Bureau’s Quarterly Sales by Price and Financing, the onset of the housing crisis in 2007 led to a decline in the share of new home sales due to conventional mortgage financing and increases in the shares due to mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and the Department of Veteran’s Affairs (VA), as well as cash purchases.
For the second quarterRead More