Production of single-family homes and apartments increased 9.3 percent in November to a seasonally adjusted 685,000 annual rate, the U.S. Commerce Department said.
Production of single-family homes and apartments
increased 9.3 percent in November to a seasonally adjusted 685,000 annual rate,
the U.S. Commerce Department reported Tuesday.
The rate is the fastest since October 2008, and officials with the National Association of Home Builders were pleased.
"While we still have a long way to go back to
normal, the latest numbers are one more indication that housing is slowly
turning the corner," said NAHB Chairman Bob Nielsen of Reno, Nev. "In scattered markets across the
country, buyers who have long sat on the sidelines are starting to take
advantage of today's very attractive prices and interest rates, while others
are making the move to a new apartment. This nascent trend would be stronger if
not for the very restrictive lending environment that continues for both
building and buying new homes."
David Crowe, the NAHB’s chief economist said the figures
are a good sign and hopefully, the start of a trend.
"Along with recent gains that have been registered
in builder confidence and other economic measures, the improvement in new-home
production and permitting shown in this latest report provides further evidence
of the gradual strengthening that we expected to see in housing markets toward
the end of the year," Crowe said. "We anticipate continued, slow
improvement in housing starts and sales through 2012."