Monday, January 28, 2013

Worst To First

Las Vegas, the city hit hardest by the housing crisis, saw the biggest rebound in new home starts in the fourth quarter, as the housing rebound continues to grow, according this Bloomberg article.  Las Vegas' new home construction surged 96% in the fourth quarter over the year earlier period.  It was followed by other hard hit areas like Naples-Ft Meyers, FL, and Atlanta, GA.  The Vegas numbers sound pretty incredible until you read this passage:
The 1,426 single-family houses started in the Las Vegas area in the fourth quarter is down from the peak of 7,873 in the third quarter of 2004, according to Metrostudy.
New home starts in Las Vegas, despite nearly doubling in the fourth quarter, were less than a fifth of their peak.  It's important to note, too, that the peak was in the third quarter of 2004, not in 2007 or 2008.  Vegas, like Phoenix and California, saw its housing bubble burst far earlier than other parts of the country, making its rebound seem more credible, and the low number of starts compared to the peak years makes me believe the housing rebound is sustainable over time.

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