8 Stories

Builders Are Building Again, Despite Risk

(Newser) - A decrease in vacant housing inventory and an uptick in sales have home builders ramping up construction for the first time in months, Time reports. Currently, the number of new homes on the market would take an estimated 8.8 months to sell—a far cry from the standard of... More »

Home Construction Leaps 17%

(Newser) - Homebuilders were busy in May, as housing starts took an unexpected 17% leap, Bloomberg reports. Lower prices and tax incentives were enough to bring in the buyers, bumping the annual rate to 532,000 homes, up from 454,000 in April. Building permits were also up more than forecast. “... More »

Homes Shrink With the Economy

Builders' 'Depression' helps drive reduction

(Newser) - Home sizes are aligned with the shrunken economy, the Los Angeles Times reports: last year, the typical home size dropped 11%—likely the fastest plunge since the 1970s. Some 90% of builders are working on a smaller scale now, an industry poll found. “People are realizing, 'Hey, I don't... More »

Stocks Inch Up as Builders Merge

(Newser) - Stocks crept higher at the open, as a pair of homebuilders planned a big merger and the government sought to help life insurers. The Dow inched up 25 points, and the S&P 0.6%, while the Nasdaq jumped 1.3%. Centex shares soared 28% on news that it would... More »

Home Builders Want Federal Bailout, Too

But critics warn adding to housing supply will only make things worse

(Newser) - Home builders, undeterred by the automakers’ troubles in securing federal aid, are campaigning for a $250 billion stimulus of their own, the Wall Street Journal reports. Saying that the economy can't recover until home prices stop tanking, the builders propose a plan, called “Fix Housing First,” where the... More »

Mortgage Meltdown Hits Small Builders

Wave of bankruptcies could in turn weaken regional banks

(Newser) - The housing market collapse that's sending homeowners into foreclosure is starting to hit small- and medium-size builders left with developments they're unable to sell, the Wall Street Journal reports. Buyers are canceling contracts and builders are missing mortgage payments on often highly leveraged projects. Small regional banks, in turn, could... More »

Housing Starts Plummet to 14-Year Low

But modest consumer price hike soothes inflation fears

(Newser) - New homes starts fell to their lowest level in 14 years last month, plunging 10%—to an annualized rate of 1.191 million—after expectations of a 4.2% decline. The number followed a 3.2% drop in August, the Wall Street Journal reports. A homebuilders' confidence gauge registered its... More »

Builders' Loans Pushed Credit Meltdown

Peddling dubious mortgages to move properties helped burst bubble

(Newser) - In the ongoing post-mortem of the housing boom, BusinessWeek turns an acute eye on developers, especially big, publicly traded builders who jumped into the mortgage business to move people into their newly built houses faster. As demand for new homes began to fizzle, they kept sales brisk by offering adjustable-rate... More »

8 Stories