Even though home sales appear to be stabilizing in much of the country, more help is needed, the NAHB chairman testified.
The National Association of
Home Builders is asking Congress to extend and improve the $8,000 new
home-buyer tax credit and inject more credit into the market.
Even though home sales
appear to be stabilizing in much of the country, more help is needed, NAHB
Chairman Joe Robson told the U.S. House Small Business Committee.
"Not only are we
continuing to feel the impact of foreclosures and short sales in the market,
but we're facing a severe credit crunch for acquisition, development and
construction lending," said Robson, a builder from Tulsa, Okla.
"Meanwhile, the use of foreclosed and short-sale properties as comps is
resulting in inappropriately low appraisals that are effectively sinking one
quarter of all new-home sales right now. Add to this the fact that demand and
home sales are already showing signs of slowing with the pending Nov. 30
expiration of the first-time home buyer tax credit."
The NHAB wants the credit
extended one more year and make all buyers of principal residences eligible.
"We estimate that this
would increase home purchases by 383,000 in the next year and help mitigate the
foreclosure crisis by whittling down inventory at all levels of the housing
market, setting the stage for a full recovery," said Robson. "This
stimulus alone would create nearly 350,000 jobs over the coming year, which is
exactly what the economy needs right now."