Morning Briefing: Newly-built home sales show positive start to the year

by Steve Randall27 Feb 2017

Newly-built home sales show positive start to the year

There was a 3.7 per cent rise for sales of newly-built single-family homes in January compared to a year earlier. Data from the HUD and US Census Bureau shows a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 555,000 units.

“This increase in new home sales is in line with our forecast for a steady, gradual recovery of the housing market,” said Granger MacDonald, chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and a home builder and developer from Kerrville, Texas. “However, the pace of growth may be hampered by supply-side headwinds, such as shortages of lots and labor.”

There were 265,000 new homes for sale in January, 5.7 months of supply at current sales pace. The median price was $312,900.

The association’s chief economist Robert Dietz says that new construction should continue to benefit from tight inventory of existing homes and the growing economy.

“We can expect further growth in new home sales throughout the year, spurred on by employment gains and a rise in household formations,” said NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz.


Young Americans sharing homes hits 115-year high

The proportion of American millennials sharing their home has hit its highest level in 115 years.

A blog by Trulia shows that 60 per cent of young Americans live with parents, other relatives, friends or roommates as high rents and high home prices make solo living unaffordable.

The real estate firm’s Mark Uh writes that in Miami, a typical renter would need to spend almost half of their income on renting a one-bedroom apartment but for a millennial this rises to 54 per cent.

Millennial renters also pay more than typical renters in Boston and Los Angeles but less in San Francisco and New York.

The article highlights the savings that are achievable by renting a two-bedroom home with a roommate rather than living alone in a one-bedroom home.

Double-digit savings can be achieved in eleven of the top 25 rental markets but Miami is a unique case. Despite the saving being the largest among the top rental markets, the 19.2 per cent saving from renting with a roomie would still leave the rent unaffordable by US government metrics.


New real estate domain names coming this spring

Real estate agents will be able to use the new .REALTY internet domains from May, adding an alternative to a .COM, but should you get one?

Domain registrars are already accepting pre-registration for the names but if you are hoping to get a generic name such as or, you may be too late as many of the most obvious options are already set at premium rates.

The latest domain adds to those real estate focused ones already available including .condos and .mortgage but consumers are usually more trusting of the more familiar domain suffixes.

A survey in 2016 by ICANN, which co-ordinates domains worldwide, found that 91 per cent of respondents rated .com as the most trusted suffix, except where ‘country’ domains are widely used – such as Canada’s .ca – where the trust rating is 95 per cent.


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