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21 Sep 2021
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Labor, building material shortages depress U.S. single-family

housing starts

By Lucia Mutkani, Reuters, 21 Sep 2021

Excerpt: WASHINGTON, Sept 21 (Reuters) - U.S. single-family homebuilding fell for a second straight month in August as builders continued to struggle with shortages of materials and labor, suggesting the housing market could remain a drag on economic growth in the third quarter. The report from the Commerce Department on Tuesday also showed the number of houses authorized for construction but not yet started raced to a record high last month, a sign of reluctance by builders to take on new projects. Going into the summer season, construction materials were scarce, and builder were hesitant to start any new construction. As prices are returned to an acceptable margin, new construction has started again. Was it a little too late to increase the inventory?

Buyers, rejoice: US housing market starting to normalize

By Holden Walter-Warner, TheRealDeal, 03 Sep 2021

Excerpt: Buyers shouldn’t break out the bubbly just yet, but things are starting to look up for them in the frothy housing market. Sellers have had a major advantage over the past few months as prices soared and inventory dwindled. Those trends are beginning to see slight reversals, however, according to Mansion Global. Housing inventory was still down 25.8 percent in August from a year ago, according to a Realtor.com report. But that’s better than in July, when it was down 33.5 percent. As the inventory is still down, it still is a seller’s market. Bidding wars are common, and home are selling well over listing price. With the increasing in home prices, investors in rental properties are on the decline as rents are increased to cover the purchase price, insurance, repair reservices and taxes. Renter affordability of the increased rents cannot support the increases.

Housing Market Forecast 2021 & 2022: Is Crash Coming Next?

By Marco Santarelli, Norada, 03 Sep 2021

Excerpt: Record-low mortgage rates and shortage of inventory are keeping the US housing market strong as far as demand is considered. Home prices have been surging month-over-month breaking new records. While affordability issues worsen, low mortgage rates, growing savings, and a strengthening job market combine to keep homeownership within reach for many potential buyers. But will the housing market eventually crash? Let's look at the most recent trends and housing market predictions for 2021 and 2022. As the housing prices continue to rise, outpacing typical buyers, sustainability is at jeopardy and cracks are beginning to show. Pending home sales are in the decline, but with an inventory shortage, this is expected and cannot be used as a determining factor in the housing market.

A shock is headed for the housing market

By Lance Lambert, Fortune, 05 Sep 2021

Excerpt: At the height of the pandemic, more than 7.2 million homeowners were in the mortgage forbearance program, which allows some borrowers to pause their payments. The economy has since posted one of the fastest recoveries in history. Now, just 1.7 million borrowers are enrolled in the forbearance program. It is a matter of time that the housing market will plateau or even crash, how much and when is only a guess. Forecasting using past data sources cannot be done as the many factors in determining a credible forecast has changed, i.e., pandemic, unemployment, earnings, etc. Additionally, as eviction protection has expired, the impact of these properties has not been calculated into the modeling.

'That house sold for how much?' Sizzling housing market pushes prices to new highs

By Jonathan D. Epstein, The Buffalo News, 07 Sep 2021

Excerpt: Home prices through July are up by more than 18% and the median sale price – which means half the homes sold for more and half for less – has reached a record high of just over $190,000, according to the Buffalo Niagara Association of Realtors. The housing market has been on the rise for years now. Home prices have skyrocketed to the point of causing sticker shock to many and outpricing the typical buyer.

How To Tell If the US Economy Is Actually Improving

By Andrew Lisa, GOBankingRates, 07 Sep 2021

Excerpt: The U.S. economy is a $22.72 trillion juggernaut — the most complex economic beast in the history of the world. Nothing about it is simple, including the seemingly simple task of determining if the economy is improving or not in the wake of the pandemic. But just a handful of key economic indicators can give economists and laypeople alike an idea of whether or not things are moving in the right direction. These are the economic indicators to watch. Deciphering the U.S. economy has a lot of variables and zeroing in on one component in deciding growth is futile. With the covid- 19 variable inserted into the mix, it becomes uncharted territory and using past models will not work.

US Housing Supply Continues to Lag Household Formations

By George Ratiu, realtor.com, 09 Sep 2021

Excerpt: As discussed in the writeup the last time we examined the question of housing supply adequacy, 2012 to 2019 marked a period of economic expansion and prosperity. Right after the January 2020 research, the Coronavirus pandemic changed daily life worldwide. Being stuck at home led to a re-examination of home life, resulting in increased housing demand across the country. However, as housing demand ramped up, the construction industry ran into issues with material and labor scarcity, driving the cost of both inputs up and widening the already large gap between home construction and household formations. Housing demand was strong enough that these hang-ups did not stifle home sales growth, but these trends exacerbated the preexisting shortage, making the problem worse. Statistics in the current housing market help bolster the Appraisal Report with credible results. Showing data via graphs and explaining your analysis will provide such a report. The more supportive information the Appraiser has, positive results will follow, i.e., no revisions.

Americans Haven’t Been This Down on Housing Market Since 1982

By Jordan Yadoo, yahoo!, 17 Sep 2021

Excerpt: The last time Americans were this turned off by the U.S. housing market, borrowing costs were over five times the current rate. The share of people who think now is a good time to buy a home fell in September to 29%, extending the plunge from March when the proportion was more than twice as high, data from the University of Michigan consumer sentiment survey showed Friday. It’s also the smallest chunk of respondents since 1982. Back then, the average for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage topped 15%. That compares with today’s 2.86% rate, according to Freddie Mac. The housing market is still in the increasing column along with increasing prices. Home buyers are beginning to wain due to the rising prices that are pricing the average buyer out of the market. These factors are reminiscent at the beginning of the 2008 crash, will history repeat itself?

Why Is the U.S. Housing Market So Out of Whack? What

Homebuyers Need To Know Right Now

By Elena Cox, realtor.com, 20 Sep 2021

Excerpt: There’s never been a housing market quite like this before. Today’s real estate agents are pulling double duty as therapists, consoling heartbroken homebuyers who lost out on their fifth—or 15th—home. First-time homebuyers around the country are being outbid by investors—some of whom are willing to pay more than $100,000 over asking price. Wealthy buyers offering all cash for second homes are sending prices ever higher, pushing the dream of homeownership out of reach for many folks. Meanwhile home sellers are enjoying the benefits of life in the fast lane: the ultimate seller’s market. Can all this last? Is this really going to become the new normal? The current housing market has continued to be driven by non-traditional forces. Home buyers are offering multiple offers, which in turn has driven the prices up and decreasing the starved inventory. This ‘trend’ has become the norm, but is it sustainable?

August housing starts better than expected

By Brooklee Han, HW, 21 Sep 2021

Excerpt: U.S. homebuilders started construction on 1.615 million homes in August, up 3.9% from July 2021 and 17.4% higher than a year ago, according to a new report by the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Across the country, 1.728 million building permits were pulled, which is 6% above the revised rate from a month prior and 13.5% higher than the August 2020 rate. Additionally, 1.33 million homes were completed, a decrease of 4.5% from July 2021, but this is still 9.4% higher than a year prior. After a couple of months have passed, new construction is starting to hit the market. If the weather holds in favor of the contractors, more inventory will be seen on the market and more interest from home buyers.