Housing starts

Housing starts for 2009-2012 is the subject of a report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). Factors that determine housing starts include "the underlying demand for new housing units, especially the role of demographics; cyclical and financial conditions, such as unemployment rates and lending standards; and the number of excess vacant units."

CBO presents three possible scenarios:
  • Optimistic - housing starts already at their trough; rebound begins late this year, back to underlying levels by end of 2009
  • Cyclical downturn - housing starts remain below recent levels through 2009; construction recovers during 2010, rising to underlying rates in early 2011
  • Pessimistic - housing starts continue decline to end of 2009; slow rebound in construction, held back by vacant units and weak household formation; starts would not return to underlying rates until second half of 2012

The Outlook for Housing Starts, 2009 to 2012 (pdf, 36pp/180kB), Nov. 2008

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