The "big ticket" consumer purchase industries (housing and automobiles) continue to slow while the rest of the economy picks up steam. Here is what the home-building industry is facing: Rising Competition - The number of people selling homes is increasing and the number of people buying is decreasing. Poor Affordability - Rising prices and interest rates have priced many renters out of home ownership. Consumer Shift - Individual investment dollars are transitioning out of real estate and into the stock market or into the real estate markets that have not appreciated much in the last five years, such as Texas, Carolinas, Georgia and New Mexico. Urban Sprawl - Home builders bought land in the outlying areas because that is where it was available. Now we are finding that, even in areas with a strong Employment/Permit ratio like D.C., buyers aren't willing to drive as far to work. Clearly, oil prices aren't helping sales either. Standing Inventory (see discussion ...
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