by Calculated Risk on 7/16/2019 10:04:00 AM
Tuesday, July 16, 2019
The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reported the housing market index (HMI) was at 65 in July, up from 64 in June. Any number above 50 indicates that more builders view sales conditions as good than poor.
From NAHB: Builder Confidence Holds Firm in July
Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes rose one point to 65 in July, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) released today. This marks the sixth consecutive month that sentiment levels have held at a steady range in the low- to mid-60s.Click on graph for larger image.
“Builders report solid demand for single-family homes. However, they continue to grapple with labor shortages, a dearth of buildable lots and rising construction costs that are making it increasingly challenging to build homes at affordable price points relative to buyer incomes,” said NAHB Chairman Greg Ugalde, a home builder and developer from Torrington, Conn.
“Even as builders try to rein in costs, home prices continue to outpace incomes,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz. “The current low mortgage interest rate environment should be getting more buyers off the sidelines, but they remain hesitant due to affordability concerns. Still, attractive rates should help spur new home purchases in large metro suburban markets, where approximately one-third of new construction takes place.”
All the HMI indices inched higher in July. The index measuring current sales conditions rose one point to 72, the component gauging expectations in the next six months moved a single point higher to 71 and the metric charting buyer traffic increased one point to 48. Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the South moved one point higher to 68 and the West was also up one point to 72. The Northeast remained unchanged at 60 while the Midwest fell a single point to 56.
This graph show the NAHB index since Jan 1985.
This was at the consensus forecast.