Qualified Remodeler Magazine

JUL 2018

Qualified Remodeler helps independent remodeling firms to survive, become more professional and more profitable by providing must-have business information, namely best business practices, new product information and timely design ideas.

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More than 40 million housing units have been built in the United States—and the country has added 27 million new households—since the first State of the Nation's Housing Report was released in 1988. And last year's national homeownership rate of 63.9 percent was very close to the 64 percent rate of the late 1980s. At the same time, how- ever, the number of Americans burdened by housing costs has risen by nearly 14 million households over the last 30 years; the number of households with student loan debt has nearly doubled; and the gap between black and white homeownership has widened. "By many metrics, the U.S. housing market in 2018 is on sound footing," says Chris Herbert, managing director of the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies. "But a number of challenges highlighted in the first State of the Nation's Housing report 30 years ago persist today and, in many respects, the situation has worsened for both the lowest-income Americans and those higher up the income ladder." e Harvard report also points to constraints in the supply of new housing, which is helping fuel affordability challenges. Construction started on 1.2 million new housing units in 2017, up slightly from 2016. e entire increase last year came from single-family starts, which were up 8.6 percent but, at just 849,000 units in 2017, remained well below the 1.1-million-per-year historical average. In contrast, multifami- ly starts declined by 9.7 percent to 354,100 units. e relative lack of new housing, along with Americans' decreasing propensity to move, limited the number of homes for sale, which dropped to record lows in 2017. As a result, house prices rose 6.2 percent in 2017 and now top their pre-crisis peaks in a majority of the nation's largest metros. While rents also increased by a more modest 3.7 percent, there are signs that rent increases are slowing and vacancies are increasing, particularly for new, high-end units. To download a copy of the full report, go to jchs.harvard.edu/ state-nations-housing-2018. 30th Annual Harvard Report Sees Gains and Losses HOUSING ECONOMICS Source: JCHS tabulations of U.S. Census Bureau, Housing Vacancy Surveys. 10 July 2018 QR QualifiedRemodeler.com IN BRIEF Homeownership rates for young adults are at 30-year lows ■ 25-34 ■ 35-44 ■ 45-54 ■ 55-64 ■ 65 and Over Homeownership Rate (Percent) 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Year '88 '94 '08 '00 '14 '89 '95 '09 '01 '15 '90 '04 '96 '10 '02 '16 '91 '05 '97 '11 '03 '17 '92 '06 '98 '12 '93 '07 '99 '13

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