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n Builders Meet With Fed Chairman as Market Conditions Turn Less Favorable
n Workforce Housing Problem Hits Close to Home
n Proposed Salmon Habitat Designation Follows Cost-Benefit Approach Advocated by NAHB
n Housing Snapshot
 
President's Message
n Participating on the Home Builder Research Panel Is Easy and Rewarding
 
Housing and Economics
n Eye on the Economy
 
Business Management
n You Can Become the Ritz-Carlton of Builders
n Tech Talk: It Doesn't Hurt to Convert — If You're Prepared
 
Seniors Housing
n Affluence, Amenities and Other Active Adult Trends to Note
n Take the Active Adult Bus Tour, Let Experts Review Your Plans at IBS
 
Builders' Show
n Structural Insulated Panels Stand Up to Hurricane Force in ‘So Small Showhouse’
n Make Your IBS Plans Now — and Save
 
Housing Finance
n Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Announce Higher Conforming Loan Limits for 2005
n NAHB Task Force on Housing Finance Reform Seeking Input from Association Members
 
Small Builders and Remodelers
n A Clear, Concise Paper Trail Leads to Smoother Running Jobs
 
Green Building
n Entries Sought for National Green Building Awards
 
Environment
n Vigilance Advised as Effort Begins to Modernize Flood Insurance Rate Maps
 
Construction Safety
n OSHA Clarifies Fall Protection Requirements for Working From Exterior Wall Top Plate
 
Multifamily
n Ron Terwilliger Named Chair of Multifamily Leadership Board
n Sustainability of Current Condo Boom Among Topics to Be Examined at Pillars Conference
 
Women's Council
n Number of Women in the Construction Industry Grew 22%
 
Sales and Marketing
n SMI Magazine Wins Folio Award
 
Commercial Builders
n Adaptive Reuse Is a Profitable Alternative When Budgets Are Tight
 
Labor
n Student Chapter Job Fair at Builders’ Show Expected to Be the Largest Ever
 
Building Products
n New Technology Gives Home Builders and Buyers Easy Access to Warranty Information
 
Builder's Engineer
n Bad News Bearers — Friend or Foe?
 
Building News
Coast To Coast

 
Association News
& Events

n Grand Rapids Builders Lament Loss of Bill Zylstra
n Save 50% on NEBS Holiday Cards, Calendars and More
n Awards Programs Deadlines
n Calendar of Events
 
NBN Back Issues
 


Builders Meet With Fed Chairman as Market Conditions Turn Less Favorable

As the Federal Reserve continues pushing up interest rates …

Building News
From Coast to Coast

n Houses Are Engines of Economic Growth

n U.S. Home Building to Remain Economic 'Stimulant' Into 2005

n Boston May Adopt Rent Control

n Investors Eye Properties, Areas Cultivated by Hispanic Users

n It's a Little Easier Being Green

n A Tall Order

n Living Like Lincoln

n Urbane Renewal

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Workforce Housing Problem Hits Close to Home

This Wednesday, Dec. 8, NAHB President Bobby Rayburn will introduce a full lineup of speakers — including HUD Secretary Alphonso Jackson and former secretaries Jack Kemp and Henry Cisneros, local and federal government officials, researchers and experts in housing finance — who will discuss the problem of providing affordably priced housing for America's working families in the communities they serve.

Sponsored by NAHB and Freddie Mac, the free, day-long symposium is designed to examine and draw public attention to the housing crunch facing police officers, teachers, fire fighters, nurses and other key community workers.

For information on attending the symposium, which is being held at the National Housing Center in Washington, D.C., click here.

News from the conference will appear in the Dec. 13 issue of NBN.

Proposed Salmon Habitat Designation Follows Cost-Benefit Approach Advocated by NAHB

Proposed federal critical habitat designations for 20 salmon and steelhead trout populations in the Pacific Northwest and California unveiled on Nov. 30 represent a cost-benefit approach to the regulation of threatened and endangered species that has long been advocated by the nation’s home builders. …

Housing Snapshot

Signs of strong economic growth boosted mortgage interest rates last week, but the cost of 30-year, fixed-rate financing still remained below 6% and was slightly less than a year earlier. "Recent economic indicators came out better than had been anticipated, buoying financial markets this week, and reinvigorating confidence in financial markets that the last three months of the year will post a very positive rate of economic growth," said Frank Nothaft, chief economist of Freddie Mac. The Commerce Department reported midweek that the Gross Domestic Product was up 3.9% in the third quarter, somewhat faster than indicated earlier. Also sweet music to the financial markets were oil prices, which fell four days in a row to $43 a barrel, the lowest level in two-and-a-half months. Last week ended on a sour note for the economy, however. Retail sales grew a disappointing 1.7% in November, suggesting mixed results for this year's holiday shopping season. And the Labor Department announced that 112,000 new jobs were created in November, below the 150,000 monthly pace that economists say is needed to keep pace with the employment needs of the country's growing population. News on the lumber price front was also sobering, as unseasonably moderate weather in many parts of the country kept construction sites active and demand for building materials up at a time of the year when inventories run lean. Random Lengths reported that framing lumber rose from $361 to $373 per 1,000 board feet, compared to $342 a year earlier. Random Lengths' structural panel composite price climbed from $340 to $377 per 1,000 square feet, still well below the year-earlier price of $434. A surge in sales of oriented strand board helped spur the price hike.
Mortgage Interest Rates
30-Year Fixed-Rate 5.81%
15-Year Fixed-Rate 5.23%
1-Year ARM 4.19%
Housing Starts - Oct. 2004*
Total 2.027 million
Single-Family Starts 1.645 million
Multifamily Starts 382,000
New Home Sales
Oct. 2004*
1.226 million
Existing Home Sales
Oct. 2004*
6.75 million
* Seasonally adjusted annual rate

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