The Commerce Department reported an 11 year high this May in housing starts which, despite thirty year mortgage rates increasing, puts manufacturers on solid ground. In the past year, metals such as aluminum, copper and nickel have increased 21 percent in value and trends show that increase to continue.
One indication that the home construction boom will continue is the decline in the rate that Americans are renting. According to the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, last year was the first year since 2004 where households occupied by renters took a downturn. Many factors could play into this trend, however, low unemployment rates and a bolstered up economy give Americans the confidence they need to invest their finances into real estate versus making monthly rental payments. Homeownership rates are starting to rise again, after hitting an all time low in 2016.
Not all share the same confidence in the building “boom” as others. Taxes imposed by the Trump Administration on imports of Canadian lumber, steel and aluminum have some feeling that price will negatively impact the demand on these resources. However lumber costs seem to be declining, with prices dropping almost 20% since May and have continually dropped through June.
While it can’t be determined if the market is showing a significant rebound, it is safe to say that rates of homeownership have stabilized.
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