Between public company financial releases, market moves, and all sorts of economic indicators (mostly bad), it has been a busy, busy news week for us at BUILDER Online. This week’s edition of Builder Blocks contains just a sampling of these story links, from the demise of Taylor-Morley Homes to the latest home building salary numbers. (Here’s a snippet: “There is no demand for land professionals right now. Anyone who is in land and still has a position is a lucky soul.”) To catch up on the headlines you missed, visit

But my favorite housing stories this week come not from the United States, but from all places, Karachi, Pakistan, where National Public Radio anchor Steve Inskeep has begun a global series on the “urban frontier.” (You can find full coverage at You may think, as I initially did, that a series of stories on Karachi would hold little interest when the American housing market appears to be crumbling into a pile of bricks at our feet, but I found myself completely engrossed in these tales of illegal housing, luxurious waterfront condo towers, and the tug-of-war between developers and activists.

Here’s just a sampling: “Steve McCartt, a native Texan who works for Emaar, shows off a model one-bedroom apartment inside the company's sales building. ‘We've learned that the market in this part of the world absolutely loves California,’ he says. ‘Where are you in the world? You don't know necessarily. Is this Karachi-specific? No, not at all.’”

Got to and listen to these stories, which are both a welcome and thought-provoking break from the gloom and doom headlines that dominate our housing market—and coverage—right now.

Get Housing Headlines

Have you taken a “tumbl” yet? Check out BUILDER’s hand-picked housing headlines from around the Web at After all, Builder Blocks contains only a sampling of the week’s top housing stories.


Boyce on Building: Impact Fee Relief--Slow In Coming

Top Headlines

Taylor-Morley Homes of St. Louis Closes Doors

California, Florida Tops in Delinquent Mortgages

May Unemployment Rate Jumps to 5.5 Percent

Study Finds Disparities in Mortgage Fees (NYT)

Hispanic Workers Hit Hard by Construction Slowdown (WSJ)

New York Crane Collapse Rattles Builders (WSJ)

Ohio Plumbing Firm Notorious for Deadly Trench Collapse in 2002 Closes

Housing Crisis

After Mortgages, Construction Crisis May Be Building (WSJ) 

Study: Gas Prices Helped Tank the Housing Market

Public Builders Beazer Leaving Colorado

San Francisco Voters Approve Lennar-Backed Redevelopment Plan

Centex’s Exit Adds to Michigan’s Woes

Hovnanian Reports $341 Million Loss in 2Q

Business of Building Home Building Salaries Stop Skyrocketing

Building Codes Builders: New SIPs Guidelines Too Narrow To Be Useful

Have You Heard? Home Builders Blitz Underway

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Please e-mail any comments, questions, suggestions, and news tips to Denise Dersin, Builder’s Editor in Chief. She can be reached at

Learn more about markets featured in this article: San Francisco, CA.