Landscape Contractor / Design Build Maintain

NOV 2017

LC/DBM provides landscape contractors with Educational, Imaginative and Practical information about their business, their employees, their machines and their projects.

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16 LC DBM I n f o r m a t i o n R e q u e s t # 4 4 7 Turnaround in Existing Home Sales Value of Total Construction Starts Makes Big Leap Architecture Billings Recede Sharp Expansion of New Home Sales After three months that saw home sales decline, and in spite of the pressure put on regional real estate markets by the recent hur - ricanes, September's existing home sales numbers posted a modest gain. However, in - ventory is down 6.4 percent this year compared to last, which continues to nega - tively affect sales. With a strong showing from the nonresidential sector, up 37 percent, the bottom line for new construction in September surged 14 percent. Residential starts came in with a small gain in value as both single family and multifamily were in positive territory. Breaking seven months in a row above the benchmark score of 50, the Architecture Billings Index dropped 4.6 points in September to come in at 49.1; dragged down by the West region, which was the only one to report a sub-50 score. New product inquiries and new design contracts, though also down, still posted strong numbers. After two down months, sales of new homes jumped 18.9 percent, bringing the pace of this traditionally volatile measurement to its highest level since October 2007. All four regions improved but the South (+25.8 percent) made up 80 percent of the gain. Homebuilder Confidence is High The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index rose 4 points in its October survey to the highest level it's been since May. Outlooks for current and future sales conditions were both up 5 points but buyer traf - fic only increased 1 point, a by- product of limited inventories.

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