Houston TX

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Lennar Homes Sees Declining Deliveries & New Orders In Houston During Q2

Lennar Homes reported fiscal second quarter numbers this week. Although the company posted higher revenues and earnings for the quarter, Lennar's Houston numbers were a noticeable soft spot. As one of the Houston area's largest new home builders, Lennar is a good gauge for the overall strength of the Houston market. As one might expect, the local market for new homes is still facing the headwinds of weak employment growth and general economic weakness stemming from the downturn in the energy sector. For the second quarter, Lennar delivered 613 new homes at an average sale [...]

Dallas Fed – Single Family Housing Squeeze To Ease In 2015

This is an interesting paper from the Dallas Fed on the single family housing squeeze in Texas. It's always entertaining when you have economists reflecting on the effects of their own actions, even if they are unaware that's what they are doing. The massive amounts of liquidity injected into the markets and the Fed's now $4.5 trillion balance sheet have created an echo bubble in housing markets across the U.S. Houston has certainly seen a decline in affordability for single family homes during the last two years. This Fed paper notes how affordability has declined [...]

Toll Brothers Q4 2014 Results: Higher Prices, Flat Contracts, Higher Cancellation Rate

Luxury home builder Toll Brothers released fourth quarter earnings results today. As expected, Toll reported higher average sale prices and higher earnings.  Toll reported a 39 percent rise in net income for the quarter on a 29 percent increase in revenues. The average price of a home delivered in Q4 was $747,00 compared to $703,000 in Q4 of last year. Toll Brothers has made a significant expansion into the Houston market, and Houston area sales probably made a significant contribution to Toll's bottom line in the latest quarter. Toll currently sells in 9 different communities in [...]

By | 2016-09-29T14:21:15+00:00 December 10th, 2014|Development, New Home Sales, Real Estate|0 Comments

Be Careful What You Ask For Houston: WTI Crude Breaks Below $61

Houston area drivers are probably rejoicing with the rapid fall in gasoline prices, but anyone who really understands the implications of the collapse in energy market is probably a little less sanguine. WTI crude oil briefly dipped below $61 per barrel this morning after the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported a rise in oil inventories of 1.5 million barrels in the week ended December 5. It probably didn't help that OPEC lowered its 2015 oil demand forecast. So far, U.S. drilling hasn't seen much of an effect, but things could change if oil prices don't [...]

By | 2014-12-10T16:14:18+00:00 December 10th, 2014|Economy, Energy & Utilities, Markets, Transportation|0 Comments

New Home Sales Disappoint At 458,000 Annual Rate In October

The Census Bureau reported that new home sales for October posted at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 458,000 for October. This was below expectations of a 470,000 rate. More interestingly, July, August and September sales numbers were revised down. September was revised down from 467 thousand to 455 thousand. August was revised down from 466,000 to 453,000, and July was revised down to 399 thousand. The median price of a new home sold in October was $305,000 and the average sales price was $401,100, both sharp increases from the same month a year ago. [...]

HAR.com Prepares For Rebrand With ‘Homes And Realtors’ Web Portal

HAR.com, the web presence of the Houston Association of Realtors is slated to lose the "Houston" moniker from it's name as it aligns with the new statewide focus. As the number one search portal for Houston area homes, HAR.com has earned a reputation for one of the most consumer-friendly websites for browsing home listings. With a new statewide focus, the old HAR.com will become the new statewide 'Homes and Realtors'. Earlier this year, HAR.com expanded it's reach as part of the new ListHub network. The major Texas markets covered by the new 'Homes and Realtors' [...]

By | 2014-11-05T01:42:24+00:00 November 5th, 2014|Development, Real Estate, Tech|0 Comments

Lennar Homes Q3 Report: Lower Average Sales Prices For Houston Deliveries And New Orders

I had a chance to look at Lennar's 2014 third quarter results, and there were some interesting numbers for Houston. Lennar of course touted higher earnings and revenues across the board, but if you look further down past the headlines you see that Lennar is also active in the multifamily construction space as well. Lennar's gross margin inched up to 25.2% in the third quarter from 24.9 percent last year. Sales incentives to buyers rose $1700 from the same quarter last year, up to $20,400 per home delivered in Q3 2014. Houston Texas is its [...]

By | 2018-05-12T01:05:48+00:00 September 18th, 2014|Development, Mortgage Rates, New Home Sales, Real Estate, Spin Cycle|1 Comment

“Re-Assessing” And Miscalculating Houston’s Housing Affordability

I was browsing articles this morning, and came across a piece in the Houston Chronicle that caught my attention because the headline mentioned affordability.  Affordability metrics are often cited by Realtors and media pundits to show that houses are still cheap and affordable, thus you should run out and buy a home. The problems is, many of those "affordability" measures are seriously flawed. The statistic cited by the Houston  Chronicle this week is one such example. In the article, Prime Property reporter, Nancy Sarnoff, looks at the $204,000 median price of a Houston home and [...]

By | 2018-02-02T23:48:10+00:00 August 28th, 2014|Education, Real Estate, Spin Cycle|1 Comment

TRI Pointe Homes Acquires Trendmaker Homes In $2.8 Billion Merger

Local home builder Trendmaker Homes became part of TRI Pointe Homes yesterday by virtue of TRI's acquisition. California based TRI Homes will now be one of the nations largest home builders following the $2.8 billion acquisition. In addition to the local nameplate of Trendmaker Homes here in Houston, TRI also inherited Pardee Homes, Winchester Homes, Maracay and Quandrant Homes. TRI CEO Douglas Bauer suggested that additional expansion is in the works now that the Wayerhouser home building companies like Trendmaker are part of a home builder team rather than a timber conglomerate. “There is obviously [...]

By | 2014-07-24T10:24:47+00:00 July 8th, 2014|Development, New Home Sales, Real Estate|0 Comments

U.S. Pending Home Sales Miss Expectations Again, Down 9% Year-Over-Year

The National Association of Realtors reported that pending home sales came in a bit lighter than expectations, with the index rising only 0.1% to 95 in January. That's 9 percent below January of last year. Once again, NAR economist Lawrence Yun was quick to play the "cold weather" card. Unfortunately, that dog doesn't hunt anymore. The real reason sales are down is because homes have become too expensive for many prospective buyers. Here's Yun's excuse:  “Ongoing disruptive weather patterns in much of the U.S. inhibited home shopping."...“Limited inventory also is playing a role, especially in [...]