The Real Reason Homebuilder Confidence is Falling

A blog about business and economics.
April 15 2013 11:22 AM

Homebuilding Confidence Is Falling—Because They Can't Build Houses Fast Enough!

National Association of Home Builders registered a decline in homebuilder confidence this month, which led some to say that the nascent housing recovery is looking like a bust. But read the report and you'll see that the most common complaints seem to be supply-side bottlenecks in responding to increased demand:

“Supply chains for building materials, developed lots and skilled workers will take some time to re-establish themselves following the recession, and in the meantime builders are feeling squeezed by higher costs and limited availability issues,” explained NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.
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If that's right, it's basically a bullish outlook. That said, I wouldn't necessarily take Crowe's word for it. NAHB has some vested interests in being bullish about house construction, etc., etc., etc. But as long as people are reporting on NAHB's own index, they ought to understand what NAHB is saying about it.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.

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