While the manufactured housing industry is struggling at sales levels about ¼th that of the most recent high from 1998, conventional housing has building permits indicate a twelve year high.
- single-family homebuilding rebounded in October and permits for future home construction jumped to a more than 12-year high.
- The data pointed to strength in the housing market amid lower mortgage rates.
- Housing starts increased 3.8% to 1.314 million units last month, with single-family construction rising for a fifth straight month and activity in the volatile multi-family sector rebounding solidly, the Commerce Department said.
A report from the U.S. Commerce Department on Tuesday also showed an increase in home completions and the stock of homes under construction.
Other housing data are shown in the graphics from various sources as shown on this report.
“This is an important report for future homebuyers since one of the largest deterrents to entering the market right now is the lack of robust housing options,” said Bill Banfield, executive vice president of Capital Markets at Quicken Loans in Detroit.
Housing starts increased 3.8% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.314 million units last month, said CNBC, with single-family construction rising for a fifth straight month and activity in the volatile multi-family sector rebounding solidly.
- Economists polled by Reuters had forecast housing starts increasing to a pace of 1.320 million units in October.
- Housing starts advanced 8.5% on a year-on-year basis in October.
- Building permits surged 5.0% to a rate of 1.461 million units in October, the highest level since May 2007.
- Permits were driven by the single-family housing segment, which increased 3.2% to the highest level since August 2007.
By contrast with more costly conventional housing is the most proven form of affordable housing in the U.S., HUD Code manufactured homes. While conventional housing is data provided by the Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR), based upon IBTS statistics collected for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
A survey Monday showed confidence among homebuilders hovering near a 1-1/2-year high in November. Conventional builders complained about “a lack of labor and regulatory constraints,” adding that “lot shortages remain a serious problem, particularly among custom builders.”
The 30-year fixed mortgage rate is at 3.75%, well below its peak of 4.94% in November 2018, according to data from Freddie Mac.
It doesn’t take a genius to see that conventional housing is rising while manufactured homes are overall down on a year-over-year basis.
Despite the evidence of the data, the corporate and staff ‘leaders’ of the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) strive to paint a picture otherwise, often pointing to their ‘new class of homes’ which they recently dubbed “CrossModTM Homes.” Who does that program benefit?
Isn’t it odd that since that ‘new class of homes’ scheme was touted in MHI’s video claiming “momentum” in late 2018, that the industry’s new home shipments have overall declined?
Even MHI’s and Fannie Mae’s recent statements indicate that the program is not successful, something that MHProNews warned against in 2017.
As MHProNews has previously noted, comparing RV shipment data from 1998 to manufactured housing from the same year, RVs used to trail manufactured homes by a 3 to 2 ratio. Today, RVs outsell manufactured homes by some 5 to 1. Yet manufactured homes are ‘affordable housing’ – a necessity – while much of the RV industry is as the name implies, recreational, a ‘luxury’ item.
It all begs the question. How is it possible that the HUD Code manufactured home industry has slumped to such a low level? Are we to believe it is mere accident? Restocking? Fewer FEMA units ordered? Since when does the industry’s fortunes rise or fall on FEMA? Don’t retailers destock and restock on a regular basis, as part of the course of doing business?
To learn more on such valid queries, see the related reports, below the byline, notices, and offers.
That’s your second installment today of “News through the lens of manufactured homes and factory-built housing,” © your runaway #1 biggest and most-read professional information resource, where “We Provide, You Decide.” © (News, fact-checks, analysis, and commentary.)
Submitted by Soheyla Kovach for MHProNews.com.
Soheyla is a co-founder and managing member of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com. Connect with us on LinkedIn here and here.
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