More than 40 U.S. homebuilders have teamed up with private equity firms to acquire and complete unfinished subdivisions as banks cut construction lending. The investments will pay off for the builders and their investors if the prices are low enough and the locations are in areas where demand is recovering, said Megan McGrath, a home building industry analyst at Barclays Capital Inc. in New York. “I’ve been getting the question: Why aren’t housing starts at zero?” McGrath asked. “The answer is, they’re probably as close to zero as they’re going to get and in some cases it still makes sense to build.”
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This week, the average U.S. fixed rate for a 30-year mortgage jumped to 3.69%. That’s still more than a percentage point lower than the 4.85% of the year-earlier week.
Embrace Home Loans, a Rhode Island-based mortgage lender, announced this week that longtime employee Ryan “Buddy” Hardiman is being promoted to senior vice president of retail and direct sales.