Housing Trends Update—September 2012

The housing market continues on its slow road to recovery, according to the September release of the ULI Real Estate Business Barometer­—a monthly online resource that tracks key economic and financial trends, published by the ULI Center for Capital Markets and Real Estate. Each month, the Terwilliger Center highlights selected data housing trends from the Barometer. Here’s what caught our eye this in the September release:

  • Multifamily building permits, for example, increased 6.4 percent to 265,000—a significant gain from June’s 249,000 permits. July results are at the highest level of new multifamily permits, the likes of which have not been seen in almost four years.
  • Multifamily housing starts, however, were down for the third consecutive month, but only by a marginal one percent.
  • Developers of single-family homes also shared a bit of good news: building permits were up 2.7 percent in July to 498,000—showing signs of growth for the 15th consecutive month. Permits are at their highest level in over two years, but still 72 percent below the pre-recession highs.
  • Single-family housing starts remained virtually unchanged, down just 0.1 percent from the month before.
  • While the price of existing single-family homes rose for a third-straight month, with a healthy increase of 2.3 percent. The pace of recovery is strong overall for existing single-family homes, although prices are still considerably below their peak.

Bottom-line: while the housing market is nowhere near the 2005 pre-recession highs, the most recent housing data is a promising indication of an upward trend. To view a complete snapshot of current housing trends, please visit the ULI Business Real Estate Barometer at http://urbanland.uli.org/EconomyMarketsTrends/Barometer.

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