The housing market has fallen to such a low level that even the two years of double-digit growth—for 2012 and 2013—predicted by the National Association of Home Builders would still leave the market well below where it should be, says NAHB's economist, Robert Denk. NAHB thinks the demographics and fundamentals of the housing market call for 1.4 million housing starts a year, but the market has been stuck in the 400,000-unit range since 2009. NAHB predicts single-family housing starts will increase 17%, to 495,000 units, in 2012, and increase another 46%, to 723,000 units, in 2013. But these large percentage changes would still leave the market at only half of where it should be, says Denk. "We think it will take [until] 2016 for the housing market to get back to normal levels of production," he says. "The current level is not that much above what we consider [to be] just maintaining the housing stock."
NAHB Forecast 2012: Housing Has Nowhere To Go But Up
November 14, 2011