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US Sees Big Shift in Attitude on New Houses

Nobody wants them; they'll take foreclosures instead
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 23, 2011 10:03 AM CDT

(Newser) – If previous patterns held, sales of new homes would be seeing a healthy bounce right about now, notes the New York Times. After all, the economy is showing a little life, rates are low, and demand has been pent-up for a while. The reality? Sales of new homes were down a staggering 80% in February from the boom times of 2005, and there's no end in sight. In fact, a fundamental shift might be under way in home shopping.

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"Instead of wanting the biggest and the newest, even if it requires a long commute, buyers now demand something smaller, cheaper and, thanks to $4-a-gallon gas, as close to their jobs as possible," writes David Streitfeld. "That often means buying a home out of foreclosure from a bank." The stats confirm: These days, four out of 10 sales of existing homes are either foreclosures or something like it. (Read more home sales stories.)

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