Not since the recession. Not in the last five, 10 or 15 years. Since the Census Bureau began collecting the information, way back in 1969.
In that time, there never has been a year with fewer new housing units. Just 480,000 houses, apartment buildings and manufactured homes were added last year; the recent high was almost 1.9 million in 2006, and the total was over a million a year all the way back to 1990.
As if that wasn’t enough, the number of existing houses for sale at the end of the year was at its lowest level since 2004, at about 2.4 million.
So what do these numbers mean to us as real estate investors? Opportunity.
People still need somewhere to live, whether they’re buying a home or renting one.
Remember what we’ve learned about finding deals on houses: They’re not all going to come from the same sources. Be creative in your thinking.
One source we really need to keep in mind, too: There are 1.6 million houses out there in the shadow inventory, houses that are owned by lenders or headed that way in foreclosure, but not yet on the market.
They’re going to be available, sooner rather than later. Banks don’t want to be in the real estate business, they want to be in the banking business. Their loss is our gain.
In other words, big or small, make the numbers work in your favor.
What do you think? Leave your thoughts below: