Trulia: The Uneven Housing Recovery

While the housing recovery continues to show progress, some housing actives are improving faster than others, according to the latest analysis from online real estate database Trulia.

Existing home sales, excluding distressed, home prices and the delinquency plus foreclosure rate are three of five indicators Trulia evaluates that are showing the most progress.

Existing home sales, excluding distressed, and home prices are both 82% back to normal. And the delinquency plus foreclosure rate is 76% back to normal. Each indicator’s data is compared with its worst reading during the housing bust and its pre-bubble normal level.

New construction starts and employment for young adults (25-34) continue to lag, being 53% and 46% back to normal respectively. 

While multiunit starts “have roared back,” single-family construction is being restrained by low household formation and a still-elevated vacancy rate, writes Jed Kolko, chief economist for Trulia. 

“Those young adults who took jobs in the past year aren’t yet buying single-family homes,” he says, noting that it typically takes years to save for a down payment and build up an income history. “So those who got hired last year—or who will find work this year—won’t be buying homes for several years to come.”

Affordability is an especially big challenge for young adults, he says.

“Prices are rising faster than incomes and millennials are clustering in less-affordable markets where buying is further out of their reach,” he says. “Despite progress, the recovery lurches ahead unevenly and still has a way to go.”

Read the Trulia report here

Written by Cassandra Dowell

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