BuildFax: New Construction Is Flat, But Remodeling On Rise

Buildfax: New Construction Is Flat, But Remodeling On Rise

Authorizations for new single-family homes were flat, but spending for home maintenance edged up in October, according to BuildFax, a provider of property condition and history insights.

BuildFax noted in its report that maintenance activity is a critical indicator of economic health, particularly as the U.S. housing stock ages.

The November Housing Health Report was based on October data. Key insights include:

  • New construction is slowing, but reinvestment into existing housing stock is trending. Single-family housing authorizations decreased from September to October 2018 by 3.08 percent. However, a 4.21 percent increase in year-over-year remodeling activity, and a 0.41 percent increase in year-over-year maintenance activity.
  • Florida maintenance activity is down year over year, a lasting effect of Hurricane Irma. Florida’s year-over-year maintenance activity is down 7.83 percent even as it maintains a top spot on volume and per capita rankings in the U.S. The decline is caused in part by Hurricane Irma, which inflated maintenance volume statewide in the months after September 2017.
  • Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) are on the upswing, particularly in California and Oregon. As cities increase in density and home prices continue to rise, ADUs are a popular and affordable option for many people to host family members or renters. California saw a 53.7 percent climb in ADU building permits in 2018 so far (compared to Jan.-Oct. 2017), and Oregon is up 25.9 percent. Washington isn’t far behind.

The complete report can be downloaded here.