The Housing Freeze Is Weather Really to Blame

first_img in Daily Dose, Data, Headlines, News The Housing Freeze: Is Weather Really to Blame? Home Sales Housing Starts Trulia 2014-02-18 Tory Barringer As the year kicks off to a mediocre start for housing, two camps have emerged: those who say trends indicate a sour turn for the housing market, and those who are more apt to dismiss the worst news as an effect of the last few months’ harsh weather. With major reports on construction and sales data on the way, Trulia chief economist Jed Kolko looked at historical patterns to determine—how much has the weather really influenced housing numbers?Reasoning that “polar vortex” will be the first words on many commentators’ lips should the latest round of data prove disappointing, Kolko calculated the historical relationship between “abnormal” weather and monthly changes in five areas of housing activity: construction starts, permits, new home sales, existing-home sales, and pending home sales.His findings?“Applying the historical patterns to last month’s actual temperature and precipitation shows that January weather probably contributed to a small decline in all five housing activities,” he said. “The January month-over-month housing data coming out in the next two weeks should be 1-2 percent lower than it would have been if last month’s weather had been in line with January norms.”Kolko’s conclusion breaks down to three points:While last month was cold, it was only a few degrees below the historical norm in many areas around the country. “In fact, the Midwest had a slightly colder January in 2009, and the Northeast had colder Januaries in 2003, 2004, and 2009, too,” he said.Temperature isn’t the only factor to consider—precipitation affects housing activity, and all four of the country’s regions ranged from dry to normal throughout the month.The weather was harshest in the Midwest and the Northeast, the two regions that account for the smallest amount of housing activity, while the South and West remained relatively unaffected. “The impact of January’s weather on starts should be most negative in the Northeast and Midwest, so if starts decline most in the South and West, then weather’s not the culprit,” Kolko said.Because of these factors, the economist says that while small declines in housing metrics may reflect the effects of winter storms, any losses beyond a few percentage points may indicate other factors at play.“January’s polar vortex should knock construction and home sales activity down, but only by 1-2 percent,” he concluded. “If sales, starts, or permits drop by more than that, don’t just blame the weather.”center_img February 18, 2014 465 Views Sharelast_img read more


first_img 0 Comments   Share   Top Stories What an MLB source said about the D-backs’ trade haul for Greinke “He’s improving. We’ll see how it progresses later in the week” is all head coach Ken Whisenhunt offered up on his starting inside linebacker.Washington got off to a strong start Sunday against Carolina, posting six tackles, a sack, a tackle for a loss, a quarterback hit plus an interception, the second of his career. He would’ve had two INTs if it weren’t for a roughing the passer penalty on Richard Marshall.“I was looking forward to having a big game,” explained Washington, who started 11 of 16 games as a rookie last season. “Obviously, us winning and playing at home you’ve got to be happy about that. The first game I wanted to make a statement.“For the most part I feel good,” he added. “With my injury right now I have to just continue to keep rehabbing and making sure I’m doing the necessary things so that hopefully I can get back as soon as possible.”As soon as Sunday? “That’s the plan.” D-backs president Derrick Hall: Franchise ‘still focused on Arizona’center_img Nevada officials reach out to D-backs on potential relocation Daryl Washington was a spectator at Cardinals practice Wednesday, certainly not a surprise after he suffered a strained calf in the season opener.“It felt pretty good today,” he said as he came off the field. “I tried a little jogging on it today but it’s a little sore, still going to be a little sore so give it a couple more days.”So while his teammates worked on correcting mistakes from the week one victory and prepared for week two, Washington got in his work on the side: riding the stationary bike and exercising with trainers. Cardinals expect improving Murphy to contribute right awaylast_img read more