Housing Sales, Starts, Permits Rise in June
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New home sales rose 11% month-over-month in June, posting their third consecutive monthly gain, according to U.S. Department of Commerce figures.
However, new home sales remained 21.3% below June 2008.
- Overall housing starts rose for the fourth consecutive month, rising 3.6% over May. Single-family starts were up 14.4%, while the more volatile multi-family starts fell 25.8%.
- Housing permits rose 8.7% for the month.
- For June, housing inventory fell to an 8.8 month supply at the current sales rate, significantly lower than May, 10.2 months, or June 2008, 10.7 months supply
The latest figures reflect improved market conditions and the impending expiration of the first-time buyer tax credit on December 1, according to a statement by the National Association of Home Builders. (NAHB)
"Today's report was in keeping with our forecasts for some glimmers of improvement on the single-family side in the second quarter, and also with the results of our latest builder surveys," said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.
"Many remain very cautious, however, in the face of the severe tightening of credit for acquisition, development and construction financing and increased instances of low appraisals tied to improper use of distressed properties as comps, both of which threaten to derail a housing and economic recovery going forward," Crowe added.