March 2016

New Home Sales Decline To 511,000 Annual Rate In March

The Census Bureau reported that new home sales for March declined to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 511,000. This was below expectations of 522,000, but higher than March of last year. The median price of a new home contracted in March was $288,000, a YoY decline of $5,400. The average price of a new home contracted in March was $356,200, $3,500 more than March of 2015. New home sales have remained grounded as the Fed's "wealth effect" continues to diminish within the real economy. New home sales are still hovering around 1991 levels, due [...]

Census: Housing Starts, Permits Decline In March

It appears the 2016 "pent-up demand" story didn't last very long. The Census Bureau just reported that housing starts and permits both fell during March. What is interesting is that single-family starts fell 9.2 percent from revised February numbers, posting at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 764,000 units. Single-family authorizations fell 1.2 percent from February figures.  Housing starts and permits are higher year-over-year, but much of the increase in activity is due to lenders "expanding the credit box", not necessarily from increased demand in general. The mortgage industry realizes that many buyers cannot afford today's [...]

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