| Click for the Finfacts Ireland Portal Homepage |

Finfacts Business News Centre

 Irish Economy
 EU Economy
 US Economy
 UK Economy
 Global Economy
 Asia Economy


How to use our RSS feed

Follow Finfacts on Twitter

Web Finfacts

See Search Box lower down this column for searches of Finfacts news pages. Where there may be the odd special character missing from an older page, it's a problem that developed when Interactive Tools upgraded to a new content management system.


Finfacts is Ireland's leading business information site and you are in its business news section.


Finfacts Homepage

Irish Share Prices

Euribor Daily Rates

Irish Economy

Global Income Per Capita

Global Cost of Living

Irish Tax - Income/Corporate

Global News

Bloomberg News

CNN Money

Cnet Tech News


Irish Independent

Irish Times

Irish Examiner

New York Times

Financial Times

Technology News




Content Management by interactivetools.com.

News : US Economy Last Updated: May 31, 2011 - 5:42 PM

US has 14.3m vacant year-round homes and home ownership has dropped to 1998 levels
By Finfacts Team
May 31, 2011 - 6:09 AM

Email this article
 Printer friendly page

The US has 14.3m vacant year-round homes according to data from the Census Bureau, for the end of the first quarter. That is 11% of the housing stock and as the housing sector continues to be a drag on the economy, the percentage of homeowners dropped to 66.4%, from a peak of 69.2% in 2004. The ownership rate is now back to the level of 1998, and may go lower.

The number of vacancy year-round total has risen 3m since the crash and it's estimated that it could take more than than 13 years to return to normal levels, because of the low rate at which Americans have been starting new households and assuming construction of new homes remains at April’s low annualised level of only 551,000.

The New York Times says today that disenchantment with real estate is bound to swell further today when the most widely watched housing index is all but guaranteed to show that prices of existing homes sank in March below the lows reached two years ago  - - until now the bottom of the housing crash. In February, the Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller index of 20 large metro areas slumped for the seventh month in a row.

Pending home sales fell in April with regional variations following increases in February and March, with unusual weather and economic softness adding to ongoing problems that are hobbling a recovery, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings with completion expected within 2 months of signing, dropped 11.6% to 81.9 in April from a downwardly revised 92.6 in March. The index is 26.5% below a cyclical peak of 111.5 in April 2010 when buyers were rushing to beat the contract deadline for the home buyer tax credit.

The NAR said that existing-home sales slipped in April, although the market has managed six gains in the past nine months. Sales eased 0.8% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.05m in April from a downwardly revised 5.09m in March, and are 12.9% below a 5.80m pace in April 2010

All-cash transactions stood at 31% in April, down from a record level of 35% in March; they were 26% in March 2010; investors account for the bulk of cash purchases.

'Distressed homes' - - typically foreclosure/bank sales and sold at a discount of about 20% – accounted for 37% of sales in April, down from 40% in March; they were 33% in April 2010.

The median (mid-point with 50% of houses below this point and 50% more expensive) existing single-family home price was $163,200 in April, which is 5.4% below a year ago. Total housing inventory at the end of April increased 9.9% to 3.87m existing homes available for sale, which represents a 9.2-month supply at the current sales pace, up from an 8.3-month supply in March.

The median sales price of new houses sold in April 2011 was $217,900; the average sales price was $268,900. The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of April was 175,000. This represents a supply of 6.5 months at the current sales rate.

In the commercial property sector, from the second quarter of this year to the second quarter of 2012, NAR forecasts vacancy rates to decline 1.0 percentage point in the office sector, 0.9 point in industrial real estate, 0.5 point in the retail sector and 1.1 percentage points in the multifamily rental market.

The Society of Industrial and Office Realtors, in its SIOR Commercial Real Estate Index, an attitudinal survey of more than 360 local market experts,1 shows a firming up of market fundamentals.

The SIOR index, measuring the impact of 10 variables, rose 6.8 percentage points to 57.5 in the first quarter, the highest since the fall of 2008. The Northeast and South drove improvements in market conditions. Vacancy rates are improving, but concessions continue to make it a tenant’s market.

Related Articles
Related Articles

© Copyright 2011 by Finfacts.com

Top of Page

US Economy
Latest Headlines
US jobs rose by 215,000 in July; Unemployment rate stable at 5.3%
US economy grew at weak pace in Q2 2015 - Worst expansion since 1945
Decoupling of per capita GDP, productivity, private employment, and median family income in America
US economy stumbles again in 2015
Income gap highest in 30 years; No inequality rise in best-paying US firms
Fed minutes raise doubts about fragility of US recovery
Senate Democrats block trade deal authority for Obama
Five firms held 25% of top US non-financial companies cash pile in 2014
US added 223,000 jobs in April; Broad jobless rate at 10.8%
Investment struggles as dividends/ share buybacks at top US firms to exceed $1tn in 2015
US economic growth plunged in Q1 2015
Why the Fed may (almost) never raise interest rates
US jobless rate falls to 5.5%; Broad rate at 11%; Participation rate at 1978 level
US added 257,000 jobs in January; Broad jobless rate at 11.3%
US economy will soon see best years in a decade
US annualised GDP slowed sharply in final quarter 2014
US budget deficit to fall to 2.6% of GDP in 2015
US added 252,000 jobs in December; Jobless rate falls to 5.6%
US adds 321,000 jobs in November; Private sector adds 10.9m jobs in 57 months of growth
US manufacturing slowed in November
US retail spending over Thanksgiving weekend fell 11%
US consumer spending weak in October; Business investment fell again
US third-quarter GDP revised up to 3.9% annualised rate
After destroying banking secrecy US helps Swiss exporters
US oil imports from OPEC cartel at 30-year low
Tax-inverted "Irish" firm Actavis agrees to buy US Botox maker Allergan
US nonfarm payroll employment rose 214,000 in October' Jobless @ 6-year low
Swiss bankers await fallout of US tax evasion acquittal
Two PMI reports give contrasting trends on US manufacturing
US GDP increased at annualised 3.5% in third quarter of 2014
US city home price growth slowed again in August; Consumer confidence rebounded in September
US new orders for manufactured durable goods fell again in September
Loans to buy US shares at record highs
Global markets slide; US industrial production best in 3 years & jobless claims in 14-year low
US federal budget deficit dips to 2.9% of GDP in fiscal year 2014
US added 248,000 jobs in September; Jobless rate falls to 5.9%
US set to become world’s leading liquid petroleum producer again
Obama issues new rules to combat tax inversions
US Securities and Exchange Commission to pay $30m award to foreign whistleblower
Typical American household income in 2013 was below the 1989 level