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Data & Forecasts


Top Ten Sources of Softwood Lumber Imports

The softwood lumber trade dispute between the U.S. and Canada has sent prices significantly higher in the first seven months of 2017.  The Random Lengths Composite Price—a weighted-average measure consisting of multiple species and dimensions of softwood lumber products—increased 14% over just three weeks in February.  Certain framing lumber—such as spruce-pine-fir (S-P-F) studs—remains 40% more expensive than ... Read More

Home Prices in April – Slowing Growth

The S&P/Case-Shiller and the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) released their respective home price indices for April. National home prices increased at a more moderate annual growth rate, while local home price gains varied. The Case-Shiller U.S. National Home Price Index, reported by S&P Dow Jones Indices, rose at a seasonally adjusted annual growth rate ... Read More

May Gains for New Home Sales - NAHB 2017

Contracts for new home sales expanded by 2.9% in May to a 610,000 seasonally adjusted annual rate, according to estimates from the joint data release of HUD and the Census Bureau. The report also noted a strong upward revision for the April rate of sales, increasing from a 569,000 annual pace to 593,000. The growth in sales continues ... Read More

Community Banks Account for Nearly Half of Residential Construction Loans - 1st Q 2017

Residential Construction Loans on FDIC-insured banks’ balance sheets reached $70.7 billion in the first quarter of 2017 with community banks accounting for approximately 49 percent of these loans. The current share of residential construction loans held by community banks is higher than community banks’ share of other types of loans, with the exception of farm-related loans. However, ... Read More

The Distribution of Residential Construction Loans Among Banks

Smaller banks, those with assets of less than $10 billion, hold the majority of residential construction loans, according to NAHB analysis of Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) data. Unlike mortgages, a larger proportion of residential construction loans at FDIC-insured institutions are held by banks with assets between $100 million and $10 billion.In addition, a greater ... Read More

New Residential Energy Efficiency Tax Credit Estimates

In 2005, Congress established a number of energy-efficiency tax incentives related to housing that benefitted new home buyers and remodeling homeowners. These policies included the tax code section 45L credit for the construction of energy-efficient homes (including for-rent residences and low-rise apartments), the 25C credit for retrofitting/remodeling existing homes, and the 25D credit for the installation ... Read More

Lumber Prices Rising to Start 2017

The price of lumber, from framing to structural panels, has increased in recent weeks with some prices rising more than 30%. Softwood lumber prices have been relatively steady since 2014.  During this period, the largest one-week price increase of framing lumber (+6.8%), as measured by the Random Lengths Framing Lumber Composite Index, occurred in the ... Read More

How Much Do Residential Remodelers Earn in a Year?

So, on average how much do you think remodelers earn in a year? Findings from the recently released Remodelers’ Cost of Doing Business Study: 2017 Edition show that the net profit margin for the typical residential remodeler increased to 5.3% in 2015, up from 3.0% in 2011. Combining all sources, remodelers reported an average $1.8 ... Read More

Mortgage Rates January 2017

Results from a survey administered by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) indicate that mortgage rates rose in January 2017*. Over the month, contract rates on mortgages used to purchase single-family newly constructed homes increased by 24 basis points to 4.02 percent. Although the monthly change reported by FHFA contrasted with a report by Freddie ... Read More

Residential Construction Employment Growing

The count of unfilled jobs in the overall construction sector declined recently, as residential construction employment accelerated in the last three months. According to the BLS Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) and NAHB analysis, the number of open construction sector jobs (on a seasonally adjusted basis) came in at 148,000 in December. The cycle high was 225,000 set in July. The ... Read More

The Average Number of School Age Children per Home

Across the United States, builders are often charged impact fees by local governments to help pay for infrastructure associated with children in new residential developments entering the public education system. Therefore, builders have an interest in ensuring that the number of school age children in new developments is accurately estimated. Local governments also benefit from ... Read More

Residential Construction Employment Grew in November

  The count of unfilled jobs in the overall construction sector remained elevated in October, as residential construction employment continued to grow. According to the BLS Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) and NAHB analysis, the number of open construction sector jobs (on a seasonally adjusted basis) came in at 205,000 in October, after reaching 221,000 in September. The cycle high ... Read More

Post-Recession High Set for Custom Home Building

NAHB’s analysis of Census Data from the Quarterly Starts and Completions by Purpose and Design survey indicates that the number of custom home building starts (homes built on an owner’s land, with either the owner or a builder acting as the general contractor) set a post-recession high for construction starts during the third quarter of 2016. ... Read More

Consumer Confidence – Optimistic November 2016

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 Conference Board reported that the Consumer Confidence Index jumped to 107.1 in November, from an upwardly revised 100.8 in October. Both the present situation index and the expectations index ... Read More