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.
The New York Times / August 12, 2013
In a speech in Phoenix last Tuesday, President Obama finally entered the debate over the future of United States housing policy. But his talking points offered few details about how to reduce the government’s giant footprint in the mortgage market.
Mr. Obama vowed to keep mortgage costs affordable for first-time home buyers and working families, pleasing those who think that the government should have a large role in this arena. His call for investment in rental housing was a welcome change from past mantras that focused solely on increasing homeownership across the country.
NAHB / August 8, 2013
August 8, 2013 – Builder confidence in the 55+ housing market for single-family homes showed strong continued improvement in the second quarter of 2013 compared to the same period a year ago, according to the National Association of Home Builders’ (NAHB) latest 55+ Housing Market Index (HMI) released today. The index increased 24 points to a level of 53, which is the highest second-quarter number since the inception of the index in 2008 and the seventh consecutive quarter of year over year improvements.
“Builders and developers for the 55+ housing sector are feeling optimisticRead More
Tim Ellis / Redfin / August 5, 2013
Speed Comparable to February 2013
The percentage of homes that went under contract within two weeks decreased from 31.9 percent nationwide in May to 30.5 percent in June as inventory growth continued to ease the pressure on buyers to act fast. Although the market now slowed two months in a row, it was still faster in June than it has been in years. A year ago only 23.2 percent of homes were under contract in less than two weeks—two year ago it was just 14.3 percent.
“Bay Area listings are now getting significantly fewer offers than just a couple of months ago, but homebuyers are still acting quicklyRead More
Christopher Power / Bloomberg/Businessweek / August 05, 2013
Metrostudy, a real estate consulting firm based in Houston, analyzes the health of the residential market in metropolitan areas across the U.S. and issued prescient warnings about the coming housing bust as early as 2004. One of its main analytical tools is what makes Metrostudy interesting: drive-bys.
Employees drive through newly built—or still being built—home developments and start observing. Are there toys on a house’s lawn? Good sign: A family has moved in. Families mean stability. Is there a garden hose attached to the side of the house? Another good sign. The house is not onlyRead More
Brad Hunter, chief economist / Metrostudy / July 24, 2013
Today’s New Home Sales figure confirmed that demand is staying strong in spite of higher mortgage rates. Sales of new single-family homes rose 8.3% for the month, and 38.1% compared with one year ago.
The story on higher mortgage rates is a “tale of two buyers.” The entry-level buyer has pulled back somewhat, but the move-up buyer has found a new sense of urgency to buy, to beat further increases in mortgage rates and further price hikes.
Household formation rates continue to rise, and that is fueling new home demand. Early readings of our new 2nd quarter data show positive readingsRead More