Although the economy looks like it will slow down over the next few months and GDP may not muster much growth, the housing market looks like it will continue to improve according to NAR economist Lawrence Yun.
Industrial production and exports have been falling and retail sales have barely been rising, but home sales, new construction, and home prices have all been rising. There seems to be plenty enough pent-up housing demand to keep the momentum going and the housing market gains will enable the broad U.S. economy to avoid a recession.
On a year-to-date basis, existing home sales are up 7.9%, new home sales are up 17.7%, housing starts are up 12%, median home prices are up 6.4%, and the FHFA home price index is up 5.5%.
The simplest explanation, but a powerful one, is that the U.S. population is rising. If we go back to the turn of the century, there were 282 million people living in America. Today there are 322 million, according to the Census population clock, with one live birth occurring every 8 seconds and one death every 12 seconds, and one international immigrant arriving every 33 seconds. The net impact is that about 2 to 3 million additional residents live in America every year, and shelter is one of the most basic of human needs.