Builder cer­tainty high­est in 61/2 years

Hous­ing

Austin American-Statesman - - BUSINESS - Con­tin­ued from B

the Great Re­ces­sion.

An­other big rea­son for the re­bound: The ex­cess sup­ply of homes that were built dur­ing the hous­ing boom has fi­nally thinned out. Only 149,000 new homes were for sale at the end of last month, ac­cord­ing to the report. That’s just above a record low of 143,000 in Au­gust.

The in­crease in the sup­ply of new homes for sale was the first sus­tained rise in five years. Econ­o­mists said that re­flects grow­ing op­ti­mism among builders that the re­cov­ery will en­dure.

Builder con­fi­dence rose this month to its high­est level in 6½ years, ac­cord­ing to the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Home Builders/Wells Fargo sur­vey re­leased last week.

The pace of home con­struc­tion is nearly 22 per­cent higher than a year ear­lier, ac­cord­ing to government data. Builders are on track this year to start work on the most homes in four years.

There have been other signs of a re­cov­ery in the hous­ing mar­ket.

Home prices are also in­creas­ing. The Stan­dard & Poor’s/CaseShiller na­tional home price in­dex re­leased Wed­nes­day in­creased 4.3 per­cent in Oc­to­ber com­pared with a year ago. That’s the largest yearover-year in­crease in 2 ½ years. And prices rose for the 12-month pe­riod in 18 of the 20 cities tracked by the in­dex.

Sales of pre­vi­ously oc­cu­pied homes rose to the high­est level in three years in Novem­ber, the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Real­tors said last week.

Each home built cre­ates an av­er­age of three jobs for a year and gen­er­ates about $90,000 in tax rev­enue, ac­cord­ing to statis­tics from the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Home Builders.

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