Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year from MetroIntelligence



Happy New Year 2013 from The Housing Chronicles Blog and MetroIntelligence!  Did you know that civilizations around the world have been celebrating the start of each new year for at least four millennia?  Today, most New Year’s festivities begin on December 31 (New Year’s Eve), the last day of the Gregorian calendar, and continue into the early hours of January 1 (New Year’s Day). Common traditions include attending parties, eating special New Year’s foods, making resolutions for the new year and watching fireworks displays.  Read on for more of the history of celebrating the New Year…

Friday, December 21, 2012

Merry Christmas from The Housing Chronicles Blog


BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/21/12


Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/21/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:
  • Housing starts in November dip by 3.0% from October but still 21.6% above November 2011
  • Existing home sales in November up by 14.5% from a year ago; prices have risen by 1.1%
  • FHFA House Price Index rose by 5.6% for 12-month period ending in October 2012; now 15.7% below April 2007 peak
  • GDP in 3Q2012 rises from 2.7% to 3.1% in third and final estimate
  • Leading Economic Index declined slightly in November following two months of gains


Please note that due to the Christmas holiday the next edition of this update will be next Friday, December 28th.

Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Evan Lancaster at elancaster@penpubinc.com.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/19/12

Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/19/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:
  • Housing Market Index rose to 47 in December, the highest level since April 2006
  • Empire State Manufacturing Survey shows declining conditions in December
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Evan Lancaster at elancaster@penpubinc.com.

Monday, December 17, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/17/12

Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/17/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:
  • Consumer Price Index fell by 0.3% in November as gas prices plummet and is up by 1.9% over last 12 months
  • Industrial production rebounded by 1.1% in November as recovery from Hurricane Sandy continues
  • Mortgage applications rise by 6.2% in latest survey, due mostly to refinancings
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Evan Lancaster at elancaster@penpubinc.com.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Demographics as Destiny: How the Changing Country Will Impact the Housing Market

"The times, they are a-changin’.”

When Bob Dylan penned those words back in 1963, the country was embarking on a generational political and social upheaval that would come to define the next decade, especially for civil rights, voting rights and a national safety net.  At the same time, the demographic make-up of the country in the 1960 Census was still quite traditional:  over 88% Caucasian, 19% foreign born, 70% lived in cities, 63% owned their own homes, 69% of men were married, 65% of women were married and the average family size was 3.65 persons.  Total population:  183.2 million.

By the 2010 Census, five decades of gradual shifts in immigration, the rising financial independence of women in the workplace, expanding urban boundaries and relaxed social mores on divorce gave us a country a bit different from 1960:  about 72% Caucasian (64% non-Hispanic whites), 13% foreign born, 81% lived in cities, 65% owned their homes, 51% of men were married, 49% of women were married and the average family size was 3.14 persons.  Total population:  308.7 million.

By 2050, the Census Bureau is projecting a total population approaching 430 million, with 60% of this increase due to immigrants and their children.  That’s mostly because the U.S. has entered into what’s known as a ‘baby bust,’ in which the domestic birthrate is not high enough to replace the population.  In fact, according to a recent Pew Research Center study, the 2011 birthrate of 63 births per 1,000 women of child-bearing age was the lowest ever recorded -- and nearly half the rate noted at the height of the Baby Boom.  Since a growing economy and entitlements such as Social Security and Medicare rely on younger workers participating in the workforce, we’ll have no choice but to embrace ambitious people from other countries -- and of course they’ll need somewhere to live.

The reason I’m citing these statistics is because the election results of November of 2012 starkly revealed ongoing socio-economic and political shifts that had been quietly occurring in the country for decades (even if some insulated politicians and pundits never got the memo).  Besides re-electing the first African-American President in history, voters in two states approved gay marriage while those in two others said they were ready for legal marijuana use.

While you could argue that the main Presidential argument was about tax reform and entitlement spending, in other ways it was arguably the most progressive election of my lifetime and, like it or not, foreshadows more changes to come that the nation’s builders have already been addressing for years.  Today, because that means everything from Milliennials demanding sustainable living to single women who telecommute from home offices, the way in which the industry markets, merchandises and sells the latest models will differ for each specific audience.

The largest cohort is actually the Millennials, 80 million strong and born largely between 1983 and 2000.  With the older ones eyeing large student loan payments and having lived through the financial meltdown, many are not yet ready to make the plunge into homeownership.   Still, a FannieMae survey reports that 90% of them want to eventually own a home, and over 40% want to live in a close-in suburb where transportation options abound.

Another huge group is the Baby Boomers, who number over 75 million people and control the vast majority of the country’s personal wealth, as well as account for half of consumer spending.  Over one-third of these people (and over 40% of younger Boomers) plan to move somewhere else for retirement, and cite healthcare and cost of living as their most important considerations, followed by a better climate, proximity to family and networking opportunities in order to keep socially engaged. They are now retiring at the rate of about 10,000 persons per day.

One key external group includes immigrants, who are more likely to demand homes which can accommodate multiple generations.  Considering that foreign-born persons are much more likely to live with other generations than those born in the U.S. (24.6% versus 15.5%), builders will have no choice but to address the 50 million or more immigrants expected to move here over the next 40 years (half of whom will likely come from Latin American countries).

Within those groups -- as well as the smaller Generation X -- builders will also have to carefully craft their messages to single women (who are almost twice as likely as single men to buy a home) and non-traditional couples or families who will demand the same things as everyone else:  a safe place to live, grow and prosper.

Friday, December 14, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/14/12


Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/14/12 on the Web.


In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:
  • Federal Reserve to keep rates low as long as unemployment above 6.5% and inflation below 2.5%
  • Retail sales up by 0.3% from October and by 3.7% from November 2011
  • Producer Price Index fell by 0.8% in November but still up by 1.5% for prior 12-month period
  • Initial unemployment claims fall by 29,000 in latest report
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Dani Smith at dsmith@penpubinc.com.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/12/12

Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/12/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:

  • Improving Markets Index surges by 76 to 201 areas in December
  • Wholesale trade in October down by 1.2% from September but still 2.3% above October 2011
  • U.S. trade deficit rises to $42.2 billion in October
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Evan Lancaster at elancaster@penpubinc.com.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Fremantle Media is now casting female real estate agents in Los Angeles for a new cable series

A friend of mine works as a producer for FremantleMedia -- the company behind TV shows such as American Idol, America's Got Talent and The X Factor -- and they're now casting their net to find interesting women for a new show about L.A. real estate agents.  Maybe that's you??
From his email to me:
This new series is looking for super successful female agents between the ages of 21-40 who are sexy, outgoing, and very competitive.
Specifically looking for Asian, African American, and Latina agents.
Must have a real estate license and own their listings.
Please send a photo, contact information, and a little bit yourself.

Also let us know why you have the edge over your competition to sfurlong.gsd@gmail.com or call 818-748-1299.
Good luck!

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/10/12

Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/10/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:

  • Nonfarm employment rose by 146,000 in November as unemployment rate edged down to 7.7%
  • Consumer confidence dips in early December due to uncertainty about 'fiscal cliff.'
  • Initial unemployment claims fall by 25,000 in latest report following temporary increase due to Hurricane Sandy
  • Mortgage applications rise by 4.5% in latest survey, although purchase loans remain flat
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Dani Smith at dsmith@penpubinc.com.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Happy Hanukkah from Housing Chronicles

We at MetroIntelligence and The Housing Chronicles Blog would like to wish our Jewish friends, colleagues, neighbors and clients a very Happy Hanukkah. Ever wonder what this 8-day celebration really means for your Jewish friends, neighbors and colleagues?  The joyous festival of Hanukkah begins on 25 Kislev of the Jewish calendar. It celebrates two miracles –a great Jewish military victory and a miraculous supply of oil for the Temple…click here to read on

Friday, December 7, 2012

10 tips for a greener holiday season

Wondering how you can make your holiday season more sustainable this year?

Fortunately, the folks at Greenpeace have come up with a list of 10 things you can do to make your own holidays even more green this year.

 Read on

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/7/12


Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/7/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:
  • Private sector employment rose by 118,000 jobs in October
  • Job cuts increased for third consecutive month in November but YTD totals still 13% lower than in 2011
  • Labor productivity rose at 2.9% annual rate in 3Q 2012
  • Factory orders up by 0.8% in October as inventories rise to highest level since 1992
  • Service sector economy improving slightly faster in November than in manufacturing sector
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Dani Smith at dsmith@penpubinc.com.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/5/12

Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/5/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:

  • Construction spending climbed nearly three times more than more forecast in October
  • Manufacturing sector activity falls in November following two months of modest expansion
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Dani Smith at dsmith@penpubinc.com.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Last day to register for the 2012 Riverside San Bernardino Economic Forecast Conference


Online registration is almost closed for the 2012 Riverside/San Bernardino Economic Forecast Conference!  As in years past, MetroIntelligence has written the sections on residential and commercial real estate for the conference book handed out to all attendees.  Discounts available for clients and blog readers!


2012 Riverside/San Bernardino Economic Forecast Conference
Thursday, December 6, 2012
Doubletree by Hilton Hotel, Ontario Airport
222 North Vineyard Ave
Ontario, CA 91764

Registration and Breakfast: 7:00 AM
Program: 8:00-11:00 AM
Tickets:
$110 /Individual
$85 /Discount Affiliate Rate
$650 /Table of 8
Seating is limited so register today!
Use code metrorsb12 to save $25 on registration! 

What's next for the Riverside/San Bernardino, California, and U.S. economies?

Where are housing prices heading and how fast will they get there?

Employment is recovering slowly in Riverside/San Bernardino. What is the latest jobs forecast for 2013?

Which of Riverside/San Bernardino's industries are poised for growth?

For over 40 years, the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) has been in place as a statewide policy of environmental protection. Has the process become abused? Or is it working the way it should?

Is CEQA really one of the greatest barriers to investment in the state as some critics claim? Is economic growth being affected?

Will removing or altering CEQA protections threaten California's environment? How can that be prevented?

Featured Speakers
Christopher Thornberg
Principal
Beacon Economics
International and U.S. Forecast
Jordan Levine
Director of Economic Research
Beacon Economics
California and Riverside/San Bernardino Forecast
Honorable Michael J. Rubio
California State Senator, 16th District
Keynote Address
Use code metrorsb12 to save $25 on registration!

Monday, December 3, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 12/3/12

Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 12/3/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:

  • Federal Reserve reports expanded economic activity 'at a measured pace'
  • Personal income flat in October but savings rate rises from 3.3% to 3.4%
  • Chicago PMI improves in November after falling for two months
  • Initial unemployment claims fall by 23,000 in latest report
  • Mortgage applications fall by 0.9% in latest survey, although purchase loans rose by 3%
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Dani Smith at dsmith@penpubinc.com.

Friday, November 30, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 11/30/12


Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 11/30/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:
  • New home sales in October dip by 0.3% from September but 17.2% above October 2011
  • Pending home sales rose by 5.2% in October to 104.8, the highest level since March 2007
  • S&P Home Price Indices rise for sixth consecutive month
  • Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index rises to highest level since February 2008
  • 3rd quarter 2012 GDP rises to 2.7% from 2.0% in second estimate
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Dani Smith at dsmith@penpubinc.com.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 11/28/12

Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 11/28/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:
  • FHFA House Price Index up by 4.0% over last year
  • Leading Economic Index rises for second consecutive month
  • Consumer confidence treads water in November as consumers await news on "fiscal cliff" agreement
  • Durable goods orders rose slightly in October
  • Initial unemployment claims fall by 41,000 in latest report following previous spike due to Hurricane Sandy
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Dani Smith at dsmith@penpubinc.com.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving 2012!


Happy Thanksgiving from The Housing Chronicles Blog and MetroIntelligence!  In the fall of 1621, the Pilgrims, early settlers of Plymouth Colony, held a three-day feast to celebrate a bountiful harvest, an event many regard as the nation's first Thanksgiving. Historians have also recorded ceremonies of thanks among other groups of European settlers in North America, including British colonists in Virginia in 1619.

The legacy of thanks and the feast have survived the centuries, as the event became a national holiday in 1863 when President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed the last Thursday of November as a national day of thanksgiving. Later, President Franklin Roosevelt clarified that Thanksgiving should always be celebrated on the fourth Thursday of the month to encourage earlier holiday shopping, never on the occasional fifth Thursday.

Here at Housing Chronicles, you may have noticed that we like our statistics.  So, in honor of Thanksgiving 2012, here are some interesting stats about the day:

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

BuilderBytes' MetroIntelligence Economic Update for 11/21/12

Please click here to see the edition of BuilderBytes for 11/21/12 on the Web.

In this issue of the MetroIntelligence Economic Update, I covered the following indicators:
  • Existing home sales rose by 2.1% in October as inventory falls to 5.4-month supply
  • Builder confidence rises by five points in November to 46
  • Building permits in October rise by 2.7% over September and by 29.8% since October of 2011
  • Housing starts in October rise by 3.6% over September and by 41.9% since October of 2011
  • Some fun statistical facts about Thanksgiving 2012
Want to advertise in the newsletter and reach over 130,000 readers? Contact National Sales Manager Nick Cosan at nkosan@penpubinc.com.
Want to make sure your company or event is included in the events calendar? Contact editor Dani Smith at dsmith@penpubinc.com.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Registration now open for the 2012 Riverside San Bernardino Economic Forecast Conference


Registration is now open for the 2012 Riverside/San Bernardino Economic Forecast Conference!  As in years past, MetroIntelligence has written the sections on residential and commercial real estate for the conference book handed out to all attendees.  Discounts available for clients and blog readers!



2012 Riverside/San Bernardino Economic Forecast Conference
Thursday, December 6, 2012
Doubletree by Hilton Hotel, Ontario Airport
222 North Vineyard Ave
Ontario, CA 91764

Registration and Breakfast: 7:00 AM
Program: 8:00-11:00 AM
Tickets:
$110 /Individual
$85 /Discount Affiliate Rate
$650 /Table of 8
Seating is limited so register today!
Use code metrorsb12 to save $25 on registration! 

What's next for the Riverside/San Bernardino, California, and U.S. economies?

Where are housing prices heading and how fast will they get there?

Employment is recovering slowly in Riverside/San Bernardino. What is the latest jobs forecast for 2013?

Which of Riverside/San Bernardino's industries are poised for growth?

For over 40 years, the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) has been in place as a statewide policy of environmental protection. Has the process become abused? Or is it working the way it should?

Is CEQA really one of the greatest barriers to investment in the state as some critics claim? Is economic growth being affected?


Will removing or altering CEQA protections threaten California's environment? How can that be prevented?


Featured Speakers
Christopher Thornberg
Principal
Beacon Economics
International and U.S. Forecast
Jordan Levine
Director of Economic Research
Beacon Economics
California and Riverside/San Bernardino Forecast
Honorable Michael J. Rubio
California State Senator, 16th District
Keynote Address
Use code metrorsb12 to save $25 on registration!

Builder confidence rises by five points to 46

The confidence in the nation's home builders continues to improve, with NAHB's Housing Market Index rising to 46 in November.  The magic number to reach is 50.  More from the press release:
Builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes posted a solid, five-point gain to 46 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) for November, released today. This marks the seventh consecutive monthly gain in the confidence gauge and brings it to its highest point since May of 2006.

“While our confidence gauge has yet to breach the 50 mark -- at which point an equal number of builders view sales conditions as good versus poor -- we have certainly made substantial progress since this time last year, when the HMI stood at 19,” observed NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “At this point, difficult appraisals and tight lending conditions for builders and buyers remain limiting factors for the burgeoning housing recovery, along with shortages of buildable lots that have begun popping up in certain markets.”
 You can read the entire release here.

Existing home sales and prices rise in October

According to the NAR, existing home sales rose by 2.1% from September to October as prices rose for an eighth consecutive month to $178,600 (up 11.1% from a year ago).  From the press release:

Sales of existing homes increased in October, even with some regional impact from Hurricane Sandy, while home prices continued to rise due to lower levels of inventory supply, according to the National Association of Realtors®.

Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, rose 2.1 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.79 million in October from a downwardly revised 4.69 million in September, and are 10.9 percent above the 4.32 million-unit level in October 2011.

The national median existing-home price for all housing types was $178,600 in October, which is 11.1 percent above a year ago. This marks eight consecutive monthly year-over-year increases, which last occurred from October 2005 to May 2006.

Distressed homes - foreclosures and short sales sold at deep discounts - accounted for 24 percent of October sales (12 percent were foreclosures and 12 percent were short sales), unchanged from September; they were 28 percent in October 2011. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 20 percent below market value in October, while short sales were discounted 14 percent.

Total housing inventory at the end of October fell 1.4 percent to 2.14 million existing homes available for sale, which represents a 5.4-month supply 4 at the current sales pace, down from 5.6 months in September, and is the lowest housing supply since February of 2006 when it was 5.2 months. Listed inventory is 21.9 percent below a year ago when there was a 7.6-month supply.

You can read the entire release here.