According to a report just released by the Census Beaureau, permits being issued for new single family homes are still nowhere near where they were before the bubble burst. I reviewed this entire report and compiled information from it and all of the annual reports back to 2004 in order to determine where we stand in the state of Ohio. I really wanted to know just how low the permit numbers were because I have a theory about how this could be good news for the future of new home construction.
New Home Construction - Out with the Old
A little background about me - I was highly involved in single family residential construction for over 15 years which was followed by 4 years of representation of new home builders. I am intimately aware of the good and bad of builders, materials, and subcontractors who have been and are involved in the construction of homes.
You might ask me how I can think that the reduction of an industry to less than half of itself could be a good thing. My answer is that because of the bursting of the housing bubble, the entire industry has been gutted top-to-bottom. When we were building over 100 new homes every day in 2004, everyone was involved. Inexperienced labor was used under the guidance of guys "who've been doing this their entire lives." The new labor learned nothing new because they were being taught from under a rock. With the elimination of most of these new guys to different industries and the loss of the previous builder generation, we might actually get a renewed industry knowledge. It is my hope that the home builders of today are learned in the modern methods and materials of home construction. New homes can be built to last 100 years, have huge energy efficiency (see my older posts http://www.ohiohomesandrealestate.com/blog/understanding-energy-efficiency-in-residential-homes.html).
Experts Can Help Home Buyers
If y0u are, or know of anyone, thinking of adding to the permit count in the state of Ohio, I highly encourage you to sit down with someone who knows the industry before you talk to a builder. It is impossible to walk through a builder's model home, chit-chat with the builder rep, and not get sucked in. I was the guy who set-up model homes and representative presentations so I know that they are extremely effective at getting you to "just leave a comment card", or "just help me figure out which kitchen is perfect."
A professional Realtor knows housing. Most people don't even think about contacting a Realtor when they are thinking new construction, but they should. A good agent can use your wants, needs, and circumstances to assemble the perfect combination of lot, floor plan, builder, and lender for you. Please do not worry about the builders, the good ones appreciate a professional real estate agent's involvement and happily pay all real estate commissions for the buyer.