Just as distributors are keeping a closer eye on their inventory in uncertain times, single-family home builders are also doing so by slowing the pace of new production by nearly 3% in July, according to the Commerce Department and reported by the National Association of Home Builders. NAHB says this is the lowest rate of single-family housing starts since January 1991. (See housing starts numbers for July here.)
The president of NAHB says: “Though some may be inclined to focus only on the negative angle of this report, there is definitely a bright side. The actions that home builders are taking right now to keep a lid on new production are slowly but surely helping to bring supply and demand back into balance and put us on the road to a much healthier housing market.”
“The single-family numbers in this report are very much in sync with what home builders have been saying in our latest surveys,”said NAHB Chief Economist David Seiders. “While there is definitely a sense that we are nearing the bottom of the downswing in home sales, builders are not ready to start ratcheting up production just yet -nor should they be, until after sales begin to rebound and the inventory overhang is reduced further.”
Forbes today released one of its famous lists, this time focused on “America’s Most Distressed Housing Markets.” You can find that list and accompanying article here.
The hardest-hit, according to Forbes, is Las Vegas, NV, Sacramento, CA, and Los Angeles, CA. More than half of last quarter’s sales in those markets were for a loss, and as much as 20% were by people who had lived in their homes for less than a year.
What are you seeing locally? Have numbers started to rebound or stabilize? Comment below.