It is getting easier these days to find positive news about the housing market locally and nationally. But does that indicate the worst is over? Are we on the road to recovery? According to the recent report released by the Federal Reserve, among the 12 banking regions in the US all show some signs of recovery. The Department of Commerce released a report this week indicating New Home Sales up 11% over 2008. The Consumer Confidence index has risen by small margins. Locally, year over year sales are up. Homes priced at a million or more also seeing stronger activity.
And yet we hear forcelosures are up and some lenders guildelines and appraisal procedures make it far from a slam dunk to get a loan over the conforming limits.
However, several major construction lending banks are indicating a willingness to provide funding for some developers and homebuilders to produce more new homes. Quadrant Homes, the areas largest homebuilder announced it was increasing its production schedule to three starts a day.
There are many more indicators both pro and con against a recovering or declining market. The perspective is shaped by the perception of consumers, realtors, builders,lenders and others with a vested interest in how the housing market afftects them.
It would seem the numbers are clear and there is a measurable improvement from 2008. We have a long way to go to before pain of the past 2 years is a memory. But it is a far better outlook today than the outlook was in the 4th quarter of 2008. Whether you are optimistic, pessimistic or a realist you would have to agree the activity and the statistical indications are better.