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New-Home Sales are 41.5% Higher than a Year Ago

Buyers are increasingly are targeting new-home construction as they face a low inventory of existing homes. New-home sales in October are 41.5% higher than they were a year ago, the Commerce Department reported late last week. “Buyer traffic remained strong in October even as the country’s attention was focused on the elections and policy issues going into 2021,” says Chuck Fowke, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders.

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Where to Find the Top New-Home Markets

More buyers are being drawn to new-home construction during the pandemic. Construction of single-family homes last month soared to the highest level since the spring of 2007. New-home construction is up 8.6% from a year ago, the Commerce Department reported last week. The top performing new-home markets in October were Raleigh. N.C.; Denver; and Jacksonville, Fla., according to Zonda’s New Home Pending Sales Index, which reflects the number

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Real Estate could see Best Winter Ever

Defying high unemployment and an economic recession, the housing market has surged during the COVID-19 pandemic. That isn’t likely to let up heading into the winter months, said Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of REALTORS® during Tuesday’s “Residential Economic Issues & Trends Forum” at the virtual 2020 REALTORS® Conference & Expo. “2020 has been a year of surprises,” Yun said, singling out

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New-Home Sales Slow Slightly

The new-home market continues to be a bright spot in real estate, but sales scaled back slightly in September, the Commerce Department’s latest data shows. Sales of newly built single-family homes dropped 3.5% in September to a pace of 959,000. However, sales of new homes are 32.1% higher than they were a year ago as builders try to play catch-up. “The demand for new single-family homes remains strong as interest rates are at histori

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Homebuilding is Booming, but is it Enough?

As October began, homebuilding starts were up more than 8% compared to a year ago. But that increase in new homes on the market is still not enough to meet demand, says Lawrence Yun, chief economist of the National Association of REALTORS®. Housing starts in September were at a 1.42-million-unit production level on an annualized basis, but Yun says the annualized number of permits, 1.55 million homes, will better meet housing demand. Permi

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Record-High Lumber Costs Drive Up New-Home Prices

Shoppers seeking newly constructed homes are facing sharply increased prices as the cost of lumber has soared to record highs. Many buyers are finding themselves priced out of the new-home market, builders say. Recent price spikes in lumber have added more than $16,000 to the typical cost of a new single-family home. The multifamily sector is also feeling the impact, with the typical apartment seeing an increase of more than $6,000, according

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Stucco Has Become Most Popular Exterior Choice for New Homes

Expect to see a greater mix of stucco, vinyl, and fiber cement siding as you travel around new-construction neighborhoods.  Twenty-seven percent of new single-family homes in 2019 used stucco as their siding material, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Construction. Vinyl siding was the second-most common option, at 25%, followed by fiber cement siding (such as HardiePlank or Hardie Board) at 21%. Only about 5% o

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New-Home Sales Top the 1 Million Mark

Sales of newly built single-family homes in August reached their fastest pace since September 2006, the Commerce Department reported Thursday. They also attained another landmark: topping 1 million sales, to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.01 million units. That marks a 43% jump when compared to last year. “Already, more new homes have sold in 2020 than did in all of 2019,” says Danielle Hale, realtor.com®’s chief economist. “

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Builders Ramp Up Construction to Meet High Demand

Builders increased construction of single-family homes in August as buyers continued to swarm the new-home market. The pace of single-family starts last month reached its highest level since February, just before the COVID-19 pandemic ignited across the U.S. Single-family starts rose 4.1% in August to a seasonally adjusted annual rate, of 1.02 million the Commerce Department reported Thursday. Meanwhile, homebuilder sentiment last month rose

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A Shortage of Existing Homes Drives Shoppers to New Construction

As home shoppers find fewer existing homes for sale, they’re increasingly turning to new construction, The Wall Street Journal reports. New single-family home sales jumped nearly 14% in July from June and are at the highest level since December 2006, the Commerce Department reports. “The demand feels really good right now,” Martin Connor, chief financial officer at Toll Brothers Inc., told The Wall Street Journal. “The

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