Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Housing Starts

The below material is taken from Inman News, Wednesday, July 19, 2006:

Double-digit slowdown reported in single-family sector -- Permits drop in June

"The rate of privately owned housing starts dropped about 5.3 percent in June compared to May and fell about 11 percent compared to June 2005, the U.S. Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development announced today.
Single-family housing starts dropped about 6.5 percent from May to June to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about 1.49 million, a decline of about 13.8 percent compared to the June 2005 rate. The June rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 306,000.
For the first six months of 2006, the seasonally adjusted annual rate of housing starts dropped about 3.1 percent compared to the first six months of 2005.
The seasonally adjusted annual rate is a projection of a monthly total over a 12-month period, accounting for seasonal fluctuations in construction activity.
Privately owned housing units authorized by building permits in June were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about 1.86 million, which represents a 4.3 percent drop compared to May and a 14.9 drop compared to June 2005.
Single-family building-permit authorizations in June were at a rate of about 1.4 million, which is 6.3 percent below the May figure and 17.5 percent below the June 2005 rate. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 397,000 in June.
Privately owned housing completions in June were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of about 2.02 million, which is 6.4 percent above the revised May estimate and is 2 percent above the June 2005 rate.
Single-family housing completions in June were at a rate of about 1.74 million, which is 7.5 percent above the May figure of 1.62 million and 2.5 percent above the June 2005 rate. The June rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 255,000.
The agencies noted that month-to-month changes in seasonally adjusted statistics can show irregular movements. It can take four months to establish an underlying trend for building permit authorizations, for example, five months for total starts, and six months for total completions.
Statistics in the reports are estimated from sample surveys and are subject to sampling variability as well as non-sampling error including bias and variance from response, non-reporting, and under-coverage. On average, the preliminary seasonally adjusted estimates of total building permits, housing starts and housing completions are revised about 1 percent.***

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

St George Real Estate Market Update for July 2006

Market conditions have been about as predicted in line with the rest of the nation, that prices would temper. In our area, that has meant "flat lining". While sales have been taking place, one does wonder if the builders weren't just hit hardest. Well, take that in lieu of, earlier in the year, Sellers still thinking they could "ask for the sky" while asking it... and getting it... has proven to be a bit disparaging. So, while price reductions have been the call of the day with a somewhat dramatic increase in inventory, still those Sellers that have been realistic in pricing have sold their homes. In other words, while sales can't compare to last year, they have compared somewhat with 2004, our second highest year- sales are still taking place. Here are the numbers below:

Washington County Sales
Year Jan. Feb. Mar Apr May June July Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec Total for the Year
2002 357 395 469 472 545 452 506 482 416 474 424 473 5465
2003 423 454 516 560 559 592 601 618 578 617 485 664 6667
2004 547 606 830 873 850 975 903 978 943 946 936 950 10337
2005 789 784 1185 1129 1114 1167 1004 1084 1133 1094 984 908 12375
2006 763 689 847 795 813 831 4738

Among some realtors there is expression of a declining market. Our estimation is that while this is being felt, that our market is rather stabilizing with what would be more normal appreciation rates and moderating influences. The unemployment is projected at about 4.9% and other factors seem to be stabilizing enough to project that the market will stay in this more moderate or "compensating" (for last years 4th Fastest Appreciating ) market.

So, is St George Utah Real Estate a good bet? Those that have seen the potential for growth last year as the nations 2nd Fastest in U.S. per capita KNOW that St George Utah, being so centrally located, family and community values based, is poised to be that conglomerate attraction for retirees, second home owners and for all range of working class families.