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Tag Archives: National Association of Home Builders

Three in Four Voters Back Federal Housing Aid: NAHB

Americans from both political parties overwhelmingly value a role for the federal government in housing and oppose any efforts by lawmakers to eliminate traditional home buying incentives, according to a recent survey. The National Association of Home Builders polled more than 1,500 likely voters from swing states across the country in early January, with help from conservative-leaning Public Opinion Strategies and left-leaning Lake Research Partners. Three out of four voters agreed that it is appropriate and reasonable for the federal government to back homeownership.

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Markets Lift With Job Growth, Home Prices, Permits

Job growth, appreciating home prices, and fewer scuttled single-family housing permits helped improve 76 housing markets over the last six months, according to an index released Monday. The National Association of Home Builders and First American Title Insurance Company released a joint index to measure improving markets against these criteria. Cities that made the index included Dallas, Des Moines, and Jacksonville, with Florida, Michigan, Tennessee, and Texas garnering the most of any states in improving markets.

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Homebuilder Confidence Up Two Points: NAHB

Inching forward by the largest margin since May 2010, homebuilder confidence ticked up two points from a downwardly revised 21 for single-family homes, according to the National Association of Home Builders. Current sales conditions climbed two points to 22, according to the NAHB, while sales expectations for the next six months moved up to 26, reflecting a one-point increase. The index recorded a three-point gain in prospective buyer traffic that accelerated the measure to 18, the highest seen since May 2008.

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NAHB Criticizes Mortgage-Fee Raise in Payroll Tax

At least one key trade group opposes plans by some lawmakers to introduce a raise for mortgage fees in a payroll tax extension. Congress is essentially proposing to raise taxes on millions of potential home buyers in order to pay for a payroll tax cut and other non-housing legislative initiatives, NAHB chairman Bob Nielsen said in a statement. Lawmakers are busy cobbling together a payroll tax plan this week that would extend current rates for employees and their employers.

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Obama, Congress Raise Conforming Loan Limits for FHA

After several weeks of intense deliberation, with backers and supporters on both sides, Congress again raised limits for Federal Housing Administration conforming loans to $729,750, which President Barack Obama signed off on Friday. House lawmakers included an amendment to raise the limits in a stopgap spending measure cobbled together by both houses to keep the government running through December this year. The House voted for the bill by a 298-121 margin, which the Senate followed with 70 yeas and 30 nays. Trade groups rushed to extol the raised limits.

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Starts Decline Only 0.3% in October, Beating Forecasts

Steadying homebuilder confidence translated into less bad news for the housing market Thursday, as the Commerce Department reported that housing starts more or less hovered around expectations. October figures for single-family housing starts trumped estimates from September, with a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 628,000 beating expectations for 630,000. On a year-over-year basis, the boost in numbers reflects a 16.5-percent upward revision from a 539,000 housing units. Housing completions hovered around a seasonally adjusted 584,000.

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Homebuilder Confidence Highest Since 2010: NAHB

Homebuilder confidence shot up over November, revisiting a high previously seen in May 2010, according to a recent index. The National Association of Home Builders released a monthly housing market index in association with Wells Fargo that tracks homebuilder sentiment about the market by quantifying it on a 100-point index. The index found a three-point lead on 17 from October, boosting homebuilder confidence in the single-family home market to 20 points, last seen more than a year ago. The surge in confidence nevertheless remains below average.

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HBI Names New President and CEO

The Home Builders Institute has named a new president and CEO, with the announcement that John A. Courson will take over leadership of the non-profit organization. Capitalizing on his extensive industry experience, HBI will utilize Courson to target new revenue opportunities and program development.

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Senate Passes Bill to Raise Conforming Loan Limits

A bill squeaked by the Senate Thursday that would reverse lower limits for conforming loans backed by the federal government and reinstate the $729,750 threshold until 2013. Lawmakers adopted the amendment to a federal spending measure by a count of 60 to 38, giving backers of the bill the supermajority needed to avoid wrangling over the issue. Multiple news outlets reported that Congress had allowed the higher limits for conforming loans to ease in October despite a massive lobbying effort by companies and trade groups.

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Housing Starts Leapfrog Forecasts by 15% in September

Beating forecasts for lower-than-expected housing starts, builders put up 15 percent more new homes on a seasonally adjusted basis than predicted in September, the most since April 2010. The hitch: Multifamily residential construction drove the numbers. The Commerce Department reported that housing starts in September rose above August estimates for 572,000 units, hitting an annual 658,000 on a seasonally adjusted basis. Analysts speaking with MReport say the surge will not sustain itself in the months and years ahead.

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