Builder confidence shot up in December, reaching the highest level the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) has recorded in 18 years.
The Republican tax legislation, which is supported by the homebuilders but has been opposed by the National Association of Realtors, has the potential to reduce demand because of changes to deductions for mortgage interest and state and local taxes.
All three HMI components registered gains in December. NAHB said its Housing Market Index (HMI), which is cosponsored by Wells Fargo, gained 5 points to 74 from a downwardly revised (from 70) November reading.
Looking at the three-month moving averages for regional HMI scores, the Midwest climbed six points to 69, the South rose three points to 72, the West increased two points to 79 and Northeast inched up a single point to 54.
December's HMI reading was the highest since July 1999, according to NAHB data.
Why Chick-fil-A Broke Tradition and Opened on a Sunday
They spent Sunday night on a carpeted floor outside an elevator and hoped to get standby status on a Monday afternoon flight. Delta was also allowing people traveling to, from or through Atlanta through Tuesday to make a one-time change for no fee.
Once especially positive sign was that buyer traffic was up significantly, an indicator of strong consumer demand that might drive an uptick in home construction next year.
"With low unemployment rates, favorable demographics and a tight supply of existing home inventory, we can expect continued upward movement of the single-family construction sector next year", NAHB Chief Economist Robert Dietz said.
All the component indices rose in the month.
"Housing market conditions are improving partially because of new policies aimed at providing regulatory relief to the business community", NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald says in the report.
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