Houston is not at risk of a housing bubble, but a housing shortage, according to industry watchers.
That's the view of Tim Welbes, president of the Woodlands Development Co., who spoke Friday at the Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce Economic Outlook Conference. Welbes said that based upon projected population increases, Houston will need 77,000 new single-family homes in 2014. Homebuilders are expected to build about 28,000 new homes this year, resulting in a shortage of about 50,000 single-family homes.
The housing shortage is being driven by an expected 150,000 new residents this year, he said. But the Houston housing shortage actually started in 2009. That year, Welbes said, there was demand for about 31,500 homes, while there were just 23,000 built, resulting in a shortage of about 8,800 homes. It has been that way every year since.
"There is not enough labor to build all the homes and apartments needed," he said. "There's a labor shortage in the construction industry."
He also said that not as many Houstonians lost their homes in the sub-prime lending crisis as elsewhere.
"It never really got above 1,000 per month," he said. "There is no foreclosure inventory hanging over the industry."
As a result, he said the Houston housing supply is the lowest it has been since 2003, especially in more-affordable single-family homes.
"There is less than a month's supply for anything priced under $300,000," he said.
Apartment builders are doing better, Welbes said.
There was a glut of apartments before 2005, but many of those units were filled by Katrina refugees from New Orleans. Today, apartment supply and demand is basically in equilibrium.
"It tells me that the apartment builders have not overbuilt," Welbes said.
"So is there a housing bubble in Houston?" Welbes asked rhetorically. "No. I see a good housing run for the next three years."
He said most of those single-family homes are expected to be built on the west side of I-45, continuing a trend of the past few years.
Shared by AptExpert.com
Kathy Curtis, Your local apartment expert - a free apartment locator/finder service, proudly serving the entire Houston area since 1992!
Posted By Blogger to Apartments For Rent Houston and Clear Lake by AptExpert.com at 2/14/2014 03:35:00 PM