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Posts Tagged ‘rick judson’

Home Builders Confidence Continues Rising

December 17th, 2013 Comments off

The National Association of Home Builders reports builder confidence rose four points in Dec. to 58, where any number over 50 indicates builders see the market as good rather than poor. The Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) is based on current sales conditions, sales expectations and traffic of prospective buyers for newly-built, single-family homes. NAHB Chairman Rick Judson says, “The HMI is up 11 points since Dec. of 2012 and has been above fifty for the past seven months.” NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe adds, “Following a two-month pause in the index, this uptick is due in part to release of the pent-up demand caused by the uncertainty generated by the October government shutdown. We continue to look for a gradual improvement in the housing recovery in the year ahead.” As MHProNews has learned, regionally, the South added one point, while the Northeast, the Midwest and the West each lost a point.

(Photo credit: housingwire.com)

Rep. Mel Watt Chosen to Lead the Federal Housing Finance Agency

December 11th, 2013 Comments off

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Chairman Rick Judson issued a statement applauding the confirmation of Rep. Mel Watt to head the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), MHProNews has learned. Noting his experience working on housing issues as a member of the House Financial Services Committee for almost two decades, Judson says he is “the right man for the job during this critical period as Congress debates changes to overhaul the U.S. housing finance system. NAHB looks forward to working with Rep. Watt in his new role as FHFA director to help revamp Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and to create a U.S. housing finance system that ensures liquidity and stability for homeownership and rental housing.”

(Photo credit: Jacquelyn Martin/Associated Press–Rep. Mel Watt)

NAHB Supports Harvard’s Affordable Rental Initiatives

December 10th, 2013 Comments off

In response to Harvard University’s Joint Study on Housing documenting the shortage of affordable rental housing in the U. S., as MHProNews covered earlier, Chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Rick Judson issued a statement emphasizing the importance of the Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) in constructing affordable multifamily housing. Noting that efforts to reform the housing finance system need to include a federal backstop, especially during downturns in the economic cycle, Judson agrees with the Joint Center report that the Tax Credit needs to be retained, instead of being eliminated as some in Congress would have it, and even strengthened. He also suggested the government provide gap financing to reduce building costs, remove regulatory barriers to construction, and streamline LIHTC program rules.

(Photo credit: bloombergbusinessweek)

Housing Markets Slowly Improving

December 6th, 2013 Comments off

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/First American Leading Markets Index (LMI), which recently replace NAHB’s improving market index (IMI), indicates markets in 54 of the 350 major metro markets returned to or exceeded their last normal levels of economic activity. Based on current permits, prices and employment data, LMI data for November indicates the nationwide market is operating at 86 percent of normal economic and housing activity. “This index shows that most housing markets across the nation are continuing a slow, gradual climb back to normal levels,” said NAHB Chairman Rick Judson, a home builder from Charlotte, N.C. “Policymakers must guard against actions that could impede or even reverse the modest gains of the past year.” MHProNews has learned nearly half of the LMI’s in the top 54 are located in the energy producing states of Texas, North Dakota, Louisiana, Wyoming and Montana.

(Image credit: globest.com–housing market recovery)

National Association of Home Builders to Congress: Retain 30-Year Mortgage

November 11th, 2013 Comments off

While supporting housing finance system reform, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reiterates that reform must include 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages as well as mortgage financing for multifamily housing. “There are serious doubts on whether a private housing finance system would be capable of supporting this type of product without some government backing,” said Judson. “At a minimum, the cost and terms of 30-year mortgages would be significantly less favorable under a totally private system and many fewer families would be eligible for home loans.” Testifying before the Senate Banking Committee, Judson noted the importance of programs that target certain sectors of the home buying public, like the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), the Veteran’s Administration, and the Dept. of Agriculture’s Rural Housing Service. As MHProNews has learned, he said, “The Federal Housing Administration’s single-family mortgage programs are a unique and vital component of the housing finance system, providing access to homeownership for underserved communities, primarily first-time home buyers, minorities and those with limited down payment capabilities.” He also noted the difficulty home builders are having in accessing production credit from traditional funding sources.

(Image credit: firstbanktrust)

Rising Flood Insurance Premiums Addressed in Legislation

October 29th, 2013 Comments off

Chairman of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Rick Judson commends the bi-partisan support from two Senators and two Representatives for advocating identical legislation providing relief from rising flood insurance premiums. Reps. Michael Grimm (R-N.Y.) and Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) and Sens. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.) and Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) support the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act which will fix some of the unintended consequences of the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act. The measure would prevent premium rate hikes from going into effect for four years, thereby giving the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) time to accurately determine flood risk and respond to challenges from those who can prove existing flood plain maps are inaccurate. As MHProNews has learned, Judson’s statement says, “These provisions in the insurance reform bill will prevent undue hardship on the recovering housing market, help current and future policyholders keep their premiums affordable, prevent home values from dropping, and make the National Flood Insurance Program more effective for years to come.”

(Photo credit: glenviewpatch–Sunset Village manufactured home community)