Housing starts fell sharply in June, with US builders starting work on fewer single- and multi-family homes. But there was some good news for the housing recovery: Permit applications for single-family homes hit a five-year high.
Retail sales increased for the third straight month in June, but fell well short of expectations. The retail sales report might hint that consumers are feeling the delayed effects of January's payroll tax hike, according to some analysts.
US construction is starting to fall in line with the rest of the recovering housing market – housing starts rose 6.8 percent in May, with multifamily homes leading the charge. The numbers are promising, but below analysts' expectations.
The risk of mortgage default is one-third lower for people with energy efficient homes, according to a recent study. Energy efficient homes can save up to $250 per month, Alic writes, an amount that for many households could be the difference between foreclosure and mortgage repayment.
The housing market showed continued improvement in December with the National Association of Home Builders' latest Housing Market Index rising to 47.
The National Association of Home Builders' composite Housing Market Index rose to 41 while the "buyer traffic" index climbed to 35, a level not seen since April 2006.
The National Association of Home Builders' Housing Market Index rose notably in September, but housing market conditions still remain fairly distressed by historic standards.