The price of softwood lumber rose by 2.3% in December, while prices paid for ready-mix concrete, gypsum products, and OSB all fell, according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Recent data from several sources show that home buyers’ desire for large homes (of at least 2,000 square feet) is easier to satisfy in the new housing stock than among existing homes. To be more precise, 51 percent of home buyers want homes with more than 2,000 square feet of living space. Only 41 percent of existing—but 70 percent of new—single-family homes are of this size. Similarly, 44 percent of buyers want homes with more than two bathrooms. Again, this falls between the 31 percent of existing—and 68 percent of new—single-family homes that have more than two full baths. In other words, new construction is addressing a substantial demand for homes with over 2,000 square feet of space and more than two bathrooms, which tend to be under-represented in the stock of existing homes. And while open floor plans are popular among home buyers, the design of a new home tends to be even more open.
The Case-Shiller (CS) National Home Price Index, released by S&P Dow Jones Indices, continued to rise in October. The CS Home Price Index rose at a seasonally adjusted annual growth rate of 10.7%, up from 10.1% last month.
Nationally, the contract interest rate on conventional mortgages for home purchase held steady in October 2016. Over the month, the rate on conventional mortgages for home purchase was unchanged at 3.60%, according to data released by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA).
With the ongoing job and economic growth, in November consumer confidence improved. Consumers were optimistic about both the current situation and the near term outlook.
The construction business is one of the fastest growing industries once again, thanks to increase housing demand and lender activity. In today’s changing technological world, it is important for contractors to roll with these changes.
Builder confidence in the market for newly constructed single-family homes remained on firm ground in October, declining two points to a level of 63 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI).
Consumer credit outstanding expanded by a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 8.5% over the month of August 2016, 2.6 percentage points faster than its growth rate in July, 5.9%. According to the report, released by the Federal Reserve Board, there is now $3.69 trillion in outstanding consumer credit. Growth in revolving credit, which is largely composed of credit card debt, contributed to the expansion in total consumer credit.
Inflation in prices received for building materials (prior to sales to consumers) was mixed in September according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.