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NAHB Reports that Builder Confidence Continues to Rise in May (posted 5/21/09)

May 21, 2009
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Builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes improved for a second consecutive month in May to the highest level since September of 2008, according to the latest National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI). The HMI rose two points to 16 this month.

“Builders are responding to what they perceive to be some of the best home buying conditions of a lifetime,” said Joe Robson, NAHB chairman. “You’re not likely to get a better deal in terms of mortgage rates than what’s available right now. Combine that with affordable prices, the multitude of home choices and a $8000 tax credit for first-time buyers that are now available, and you have a very appealing set of reasons to make a move.”

According to David Crowe, NAHB’s chief economist, “The fact that the May HMI continued to tick up from April’s five-point increase provides confirming evidence that the improved confidence level was no fluke. This continued increase indicates that home builders feel we’re at or near the bottom of the market and that positive signs lie ahead for builders and potential home buyers, provided that builder access to production credit significantly improves.”

Crowe also noted that recent announcements by the Department of Housing and Urban Development that would enable home buyers to use the new $8000 tax credit at the closing table are especially encouraging. “We appreciate Secretary Donovan’s efforts to make the tax credit more useful to buyers by addressing the biggest hurdle to first-time purchasers-having enough cash for a suitable down payment,” he said.

For additional details, visit www.nahb.org/hmi or www.housingeconomics.com.

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