Of the roughly 850,000 single-family homes started in 2017, 64.7 percent were built with porches, according to NAHB tabulation of data from the Survey of Construction (SOC). The SOC is conducted on an ongoing, monthly basis by the U.S. Census Bureau, partially supported with funding from the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
Among other things, the SOC data show that, over the period when single-family starts were declining (from 1.7 million in 2005 to 430,000 in 2011), the share of new homes built with porches was increasing (from 54.1 percent in 2005 to 65.7 percent in 2011).
Since 2009, the share of new homes with porches has been relatively stable, staying between 63 and 65 percent most years. However, the new-home porch share has broken above the 65 percent barrier twice. The first time was the record high of 65.7 percent for new homes started in 2011. The second time was the 65.1 percent of homes started in 2016. Although the share declined slightly to 64.7 percent in 2017, that still represents the third highest percentage on record.
The Census Bureau generally publishes characteristics of new housing only for the four principal Census regions, but the underlying data can be tabulated down to the nine Census divisions. There turns out to be substantial variation across divisions in the share of new homes built with porches. Sometimes, the difference is substantial even between neighboring divisions. The low extreme is the 52 percent of new homes with porches in the West North Central divison, as well as in the West South Central that neighbors the West North Central to the south. At the high end of the scale, however, 89 percent of homes started in 2017 were built with porches in the four states that make up the East South Central division, which lies adjacent to the West South Central, on its eastern border.
While the SOC shows how many new single-family homes are built with porches, it doesn’t provide much information about the nature of the porches. Information on that, however, is available from the Annual Builder Practices Survey (BPS) conducted by Home Innovation Research Labs. The preliminary 2018 BPS report shows that front porches were far more common than side or rear porches on single-family homes built in 2017.
The BPS also shows that the average size of a front porch on a new home is roughly 100 square feet. Measured by square footage, the material most commonly used to build new home porches is concrete, followed by treated wood. Many species of wood used in home building, like southern yellow pine, don’t withstand outdoor use unless pressure treated with preservative chemicals.
That’s double the annual rate of appreciation of a “normal” market, says Svenja Gudell, Zillow’s chief economist.
Compared to October 2016, the median home in the US gained $12,500 in value as housing inventory remains low and demand surges. What’s more, in over half of the country’s largest metros, homes are worth more than they were before the recession.
“We are in the midst of an inventory crisis that shows no signs of waning, impacting potential buyers all across the country,” Gudell said.
“Home values are growing at a historically fast pace, and those potential buyers want to get in the market while they still can,” she continued. “But with homes gaining so much value in just one year, buyers – especially first-time buyers – have to set aside more and more money for a down payment just to keep up with them.”
Some West Coast markets have seen huge gains. The median home value in San Jose rose 12.3%, or $118,200, since last October, according to Zillow. San Jose’s median home value is up to $1.08 million.
In Seattle, the metro with the second-biggest gains, home values rose 11.7% year-over-year to$457,700.
Ultimately though, lower-valued homes nationwide are experiencing the largest increase in value, according to Zillow, gaining 8.4% over the last year. The median for homes valued in the bottom third of all homes nationwide is now $118,200. Meanwhile, the typical home value in the top-third rose only 3.8%, to $358,900.
The median tenure homeowners plan to stay in their homes soared with the housing recession in 2008 for good reasons. Millions of owners were underwater and millions more lacked the 20 percent equity need to sell their home. Many facing the need to move for job or space reasons found it easier to move and keep their old home to rent out. Thus was born the phenomenon of “accidental landlording”.
The housing economy has changed dramatically. Values have almost regained their peaks at the top of the housing boom, far above the levels of 2008. Yet owner tenure has not changed and repeat buyers’ expectations today are twice as long as actual tenure ten years ago. Are longer tenures now locked in stone?
One of the leading motivations to move—change in employment—is also changing. Workers stick with the same job longer today than they did 10, 20, and 30 years ago. U.S. workers had an average job tenure of 4.6 years in 2012, the last year for which figures are available—that’s up from 3.7 years in 2002 and 3.5 in 1983, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The trend holds up within almost every age and gender category—so it cannot be explained away by women’s increased presence in the workplace, or people working past traditional retirement age.
First-time buyers now expect to live in their homes 15 years or longer
Another contributing factor could be the popularity of “aging in place” among the Boomer generation. More and more elderly are staying in their family homes rather than downsizing, or moving to retirement communities or rentals. According to AARP, 87 percent of adults age 65 plus want to stay in their current home and community as they age. Among people age 50 to 64, 71 percent of people want to age in place.
The Recession Changed Ownership Patterns
According to a new analysis by economists at the National Association of Realtors, in 1985, the median tenure for sellers remaining in their home was five years, the lowest in since NAR started tracking the data in the 30-year period. From 1987 to 2008, the median tenure for sellers was a steady six years throughout the course of about a 20-year period. The only exception was in 1997 when the median tenure jumped up one year to seven years for sellers.
As the U.S. housing market entered the recession, the median tenure for sellers began to rise—seven years in 2009, eight in 2010, and to nine years in 2011 where it has remained steady through 2015. The only exception is in 2014 when the median tenure for sellers reached an all-time high at 10 years, but came back down to nine last year. Thus market changes in the last decade have caused sellers to remain in their homes longer, increasing the median number of years in the home by 50 percent more than they did 20-30 years prior.
In 2006, first-time buyers reported that their median expected tenure was just six years and nine years for repeat buyers, the lowest since we started collecting the data for both buyer types. For repeat buyers, that bumped up to 10 years in 2007, 12 years in 2009, and then up to 15 years in 2010 where it has remained steady for the past six years. For first-time buyers, the median expected tenure in the home jumped to 10 years in 2008 where it has remained ever since.
It is no surprise that repeat buyers expect to remain in their home longer than first-time buyers. It is interesting, however, to see that first-time buyers in 2006 expected to sell in just six years. Fast forward a decade to 2015 and first-time buyers expect to sell in almost double the amount of time.
Economic Implications of Longer Tenure
Significantly longer ownership tenure means that homes will change hands less frequently, which hasmajor economic implications:
Volumes of transactions will fall for real estate brokers and lenders. The coming of age of the Millennial generation could theoretically offset the effects of longer tenure except that the first symptom of extended tenure could be the chronic shortage of inventories over the last two years that has plagued home sales and limited opportunities for Millennials to buy;
Demand for remodeling and renovation will increase as owners choose to fix up their current homes rather than sell them. Increased home repair will create new business for Home Depot and hardware stores.
Inflation in prices received for building materials (prior to sales to consumers) was mixed in September according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Although their monthly changes were relatively modest, the prices of OSB and ready-mix concrete have been trending upward for quite some time and remain at historically high levels.
OSB prices climbed 2.5% in September, continuing a 7-month trend that has the commodity at its highest price since June 2013. Since February, monthly increases have averaged 3.2%, pushing prices up by a cumulative, eye-popping 25%.
In addition, although the price of ready-mix concrete fell marginally in September, the long-term trend remains concerning. Monthly increases have averaged 0.3% over the last five years as the price of ready-mix concrete has steadily risen by roughly 20%. While gypsum prices picked up (+0.1%), the prices of softwood lumber and steel mill products fell by 1.4% and 0.5%, respectively.
After holding steady in August, the economy-wide PPI rose 0.3% in September. Over three-quarters of the increase was the result of a 0.7% increase in prices for goods, while the rise in prices for services was a more modest 0.1%. Final demand prices for core goods (i.e. goods excluding food and energy) inched up 0.3%, and prices for core goods less trade services rose 1.5% over the 12 months ended in September. This represented the largest 12-month increase in two years.
As the foreclosure crisis recedes, some unwanted consequences continue to haunt neighborhoods around the country.
“Zombie” foreclosures — those properties that are currently in the foreclosure process but vacant — fell again in the third quarter, according to Attom Data Solutions. Zombies made up 4.7% of all foreclosures, down 9% from a year ago.
Among the top ten states for zombies, there have been some big declines: zombies are down 28% in Florida, 26% in California, and 14% in Illinois compared to a year ago. But they’re up 6% in New York and 3% in Massachusetts.
Still, as the housing market stays hot, lenders seem to be moving more quickly to take possession of properties where homeowners are having trouble. The number of vacant bank-owned properties jumped 67% in the third quarter compared to a year ago, to 46,604, Attom said.
The states with the biggest number of properties in foreclosure are also the states with the most zombies. They are mostly states that require foreclosures to go through a court process, including New York, New Jersey, Florida, Illinois, and Indiana.
Judicial foreclosures can be a blessing, because they provide protections to homeowners, and a curse, because they take so long to complete. The lengthy and complicated process increases the likelihood that a foreclosure will become a zombie — but the hot housing market increases incentives for struggling homeowners to fight to hold on to their properties.
Here’s the other side of central-bank engineered asset price inflation, or “healing the housing market,” as it’s called in a more politically correct manner:
San Francisco Unified school district, which employs about 3,300 teachers, has been hobbled by a teacher shortage. Despite intense efforts this year – including a signing bonus – to bring in 619 new teachers to fill the gaps left behind by those who’d retired or resigned, the district is short 38 teachers as of Monday, when the school year started. Others school districts in the Bay Area have similar problems.
For teachers, the math doesn’t work out. Average teacher pay for the 2014-15 school year was $65,000. And less after taxes. But the median annual rent was $42,000 for something close to a one-bedroom apartment. After taxes and utilities, there’s hardly any money left for anything else.
A teacher who has lived in the same rent-controlled apartment for umpteen years may still be OK. But teachers who need to find a place, such as new teachers or those who’ve been subject of a no-fault eviction, are having trouble finding anything they can afford in the city. So they pack up and leave in the middle of the school year, leaving classes without teachers. It has gotten so bad that the Board of Supervisors decided in April to ban no-fault evictions of teachers during the school year.
Yet renting, as expensive as it is in San Francisco, is the cheaper option. Teachers trying to buy a home in San Francisco are in even more trouble at current prices. And it’s not just teachers!
This aspect of Ben Bernanke’s and now Janet Yellen’s asset price inflation – and consumer price inflation for those who have to pay for housing – is what everyone here calls “The Housing Crisis.”
As if to drive home the point, so to speak, the California Association of Realtors just released itsHousing Affordability Index (HAI) for the second quarter. It is based on the median house price (only houses, not condos), prevailing mortgage interest rate, household income, and a 20% down payment.
In San Francisco, the median house price – half sell for more, half sell for less – is $1.37 million. According to Paragon Real Estate, if condos were included, the median price would drop to $1.2 million.
The median household income in San Francisco is $84,160, including households with more than one earner. So a household of two teachers with $130,000 in household income is doing pretty well, comparatively speaking.
The monthly mortgage payment for the median house in San Francisco, after a 20% down payment and at the prevailing rock-bottom mortgage rates, is $6,740 per month, or $80,900 per year!
So what kind of minimum qualifying household income would be required for the mortgage of a median house, plus taxes and insurance? For the US on average, $47,200 per year. In San Francisco, $269,600 per year. It would require a household of four teacher salaries!
Only the top-earning 13% of households in San Francisco can afford to buy that median house!
Other Bay Area counties have similar out-of-whack affordability rates: In San Mateo County (part of Silicon Valley), only 14% can buy that median home; in Marin County (north of the Golden Gate) 18%; Santa Clara Country (where San Jose is) 19%; Alameda County (where Oakland is) 20%. And so on.
And this despite the historically low mortgage rates. If prevailing mortgage rates rose to 6%, practically no one could afford to buy.
Then there’s the issue of down payment that the CAR so elegantly glosses over: the 20% down payment of for that median house in San Francisco is $275,000!
Justin Sullivan/Getty Images
How are people going to save $275,000 after taxes while living and renting in a city that is as pocket-cleaning expensive as San Francisco? Saving $275,000 on a median household income of $84,160 while paying $42,000 a year in rent, plus taxes, utilities, food, transportation, clothes, parking tickets…..
Saving anything is going to be tough. But even if that household, using herculean discipline, can save 5% of its income a year (so $4,200 a year), it would take 65 years to save that down payment. Oh well. There goes the dream.
These are a scary numbers for the housing market! If only 13% can buy that median home – when in a healthier housing market, over 50% should be able to buy a median home – who the heck is going to buy the rest of the homes?
This puts a stranglehold on demand. To sustain these crazy home prices, San Francisco needs to bring in an endless flow of highly paid people, including absentee foreign investors, to replace the teachers and other middle-class households, the artists and shop keepers and office workers, and to push out city employees, nurses, and the like. That’s how the process has worked.
But that endless influx of highly paid people and investors is grinding to a halt. Some companies are still hiring, but others are laying off, and highly paid workers are just switching jobs rather than pouring into the city in large numbers. That’s a sea change for this housing market.
It comes at a time when a historic building boom is throwing thousands of high-end condos and apartments on the market every year, for years to come.
The proportion of U.S. households that own homes has matched its lowest level in 51 years — evidence that rising property prices, high rents and stagnant pay have made it hard for many to buy.
Just 62.9 percent of households owned a home in the April-June quarter this year, a decrease from 63.4 percent 12 months ago, the Census Bureau said Thursday. The share of homeowners now equals the rate in 1965, when the census began tracking the data.
The trend appears most pronounced among millennial households, ages 18 to 34, many of whom are straining under the weight of rising apartment rents and heavy student debt. Their homeownership rate fell 0.7 percentage point over the past year to 34.1 percent. That decline may reflect, in part, more young adults leaving their parents’ homes for rental apartments.
The overall decline appears to be due largely to the increased formation of rental households, said Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist at the real estate site Trulia. McLaughlin cautioned, though, that the decrease in homeownership from a year ago was not statistically significant.
America added nearly a million households over the past year and all of them were renters. Home ownership has declined even as the housing market has been recovering from the 2007 bust that triggered the Great Recession. Ownership peaked at 69.2 percent at the end of 2004.
Home prices have been steadily outpacing gains in average earnings. This has made it harder for first-time buyers to save for down payments, thereby delaying their ability to purchase a home.
The median home sales price was $247,700 in June, up 4.8 percent from a year ago, according to the National Association of Realtors. That increase is roughly double the pace of average hourly wage gains.
New Home Sales in the United States is expected to be 526.44 Thousand by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate New Home Sales in the United States to stand at 539.95 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the United States New Home Sales is projected to trend around 589.69 Thousand in 2020, according to our econometric models.
New Home Sales
United States New Home Sales Forecasts are projected using an autoregressive integrated moving average (ARIMA) model calibrated using our analysts expectations. We model the past behaviour of United States New Home Sales using vast amounts of historical data and we adjust the coefficients of the econometric model by taking into account our analysts assessments and future expectations. The forecast for – United States New Home Sales – was last predicted on Wednesday, January 27, 2016.
While renting a home is often associated exclusively with apartment living, there are many types of homes in the rental housing stock. Renting a home, regardless of structure type, can provide a housing option for individuals and families who are on a budget, saving to purchase a home, or who expect to change locations in the near-term. And while builders have accelerated their pace of multifamily construction to meet rising rental demand, it is useful to understand the composition of the current rental housing stock.
Based on the Census Bureau’s 2013 American Housing Survey, the rental stock increased 1. 4 million from 2011 to 2013 to a total of 40 million residences. Contrary to popular expectations, most rental homes are smaller properties, single-family homes and multifamily buildings with 2 to 4 units.
Single-family detached homes made up the largest individual share of the rental housing stock, 29 percent of the entire rental market in 2013. Combining that portion of the market with the share of townhomes (single-family attached), all single-family residences accounted for 35 percent of the occupied rental stock.
The second largest share of rental stock was multifamily homes with 2 to 4 units (19 percent).
It is the case that rental housing tends to be located in urban areas. 85 percent of rental homes were located in metropolitan areas (MSAs), with 43 percent in central cities and 42 percent in suburbs. Multifamily dominated the housing rental market in both central cities and suburbs, largely due to the high land costs. Single-family rental homes were most popular in non-metropolitan areas.
The share of rental homes increased moderately almost across all structure types from 2011 to 2013, except for townhomes. The rental share of single-family homes, including both detached and townhomes, increased three percent from 2011 to 2013, compared to only a one percent increase in multifamily rental share. However, the increase for single-family rental inventory was not due to initially built-for-rent purposes, but came from formerly owner-occupied to rental homes.
30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.94 percent with an average 0.6 point for the week ending August 13, 2015, up from last week when it averaged 3.91 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 4.12 percent.
15-year FRM this week averaged 3.17 percent with an average 0.6 point, up from last week when it averaged 3.13 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.24 percent.
1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.62 percent this week with an average 0.3 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.54 percent. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 2.36 percent.
Average commitment rates should be reported along with average fees and points to reflect the total upfront cost of obtaining the mortgage. Visit the following links for theRegional and National Mortgage Rate Details and Definitions. Borrowers may still pay closing costs which are not included in the survey.
Quote Attributed to Sean Becketti, chief economist, Freddie Mac.
“The jobs report for July showed that the economy added 215,000 jobs, in line with expectations. Wage growth remains modest at 2.1 percent compared to the same time last year, and another solid if not stellar employment report leaves a potential Fed rate hike on the table for September. However, this year’s theme of overseas economic turbulence continues with the focus shifting east to China. Over the past few days the Chinese Yuan has fallen sharply. In the midst of these mixed data mortgage rates inched up, increasing 3 basis points to 3.94 percent. Headed into the fall, we’ll likely see continued interest rate tension, with dollar appreciation weighing against possible Fed rate hikes leaving the rate outlook clouded.”