New home sales down nationwide in 2011

By: Ashley Harding

Some good news in the local housing department.  Especially when you look at national numbers. With an economy that is still in recovery, the national housing market…especially when it comes building new homes…has been slow in terms of seeing any real turnaround.

But here in Lincoln, things seem to be looking up. “Yeah, we're very optimistic that this is going to be a good year. Interest rates are still at historic lows and inflation, for the most part, has not kicked in yet,” Steve Fulton of Fulton Construction said.

Back in 2003, the number of new building permits was at one of its highest in the city, with over 1500 new units…from there that number dropped as it did throughout the country.

In 2010..we were down to 370 new units…but in 2011 that number went up to 388.

“The projections are that in 2013, it's going to go up considerably. And in 2014, it may rival some of the highs that we've seen in the past,” Fred Hoke with Building and Safety said.

Unfortunately, the same can't be said about new home sales on the national level. The commerce department reports that new home sales fell last month to just 307,000. That's less than half of what economists say must be sold in a stable economy.

Here in Lincoln…officials are crediting our turnaround to a change in personal credit card debt…and a growing city.

Some say we should take advantage of this good news. “It's a very good time to build right now. So we're hoping the public takes advantage of that. And keeps us busy,” Fulton said.