U.S. new home construction rising - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

U.S. new home construction rising


Strong economic indicators came out of Washington Monday, new home construction is at a pace not seen since 2008.

Private residential construction went up more than 2% in February nationwide, growing to annual rate of $303.4 billion.

Troy and Jennifer Geraets of Solon don't have to agree on everything when it comes to buying a house.

"I actually ended up making most of the decisions, but he had veto power," Jennifer said.

After months of searching for a home, they had little trouble coming to the conclusion that building new was their best fit.

"We could just tell that there wasn't a whole lot available on the market, and what did become available, wasn't a long for very long," Jennifer said.

"We re-evaluated and we decided to go with the new construction," Troy Geraets said. 

The Geraets aren't alone.

"We've got all the business we can handle and then some," said Randy Rempel, president of the Greater Iowa City Area Homebuilders Association. 

U.S. construction in February saw the highest level of homebuilding in four years.

Builders in the fast-growing Iowa City and surrounding area have seen an increase in activity beginning last summer.  A limited housing supply has had something to do with it.

"The existing homes have sold.  I think you're starting to see values increase.  The interest rates are incredible, there's a lot of incentive to build," Rempel said. 

Insulated by the University of Iowa, the Iowa City area was never hit as hard by the housing crisis, as other parts of the country.

Still builders are optimistic that the latest trends are a good sign for the overall market moving forward.

"It's definitely on the rebound.  I look for it to keep improving," Rempel said.


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