Though home builders recently said that they feel confident about U.S. housing, new data from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reveals that there are some challenges in the construction industry that may be impeding the recovery of both the real estate market and the overall economy.
According to a press release from the company, builders have been encountering labor shortages – from carpenters and excavators to bricklayers and roofers – since June 2012. Because of this, they have had to pay their employees more money, which has caused them to raise property prices. Additionally, projects have been delayed or even turned down due to a lack of resources.
Part of the reason for this is that construction workers who were laid off during the Great Recession were forced to seek employment elsewhere, and now that the industry needs them again, they aren't available.
To help deal with this issue, the NAHB has partnered up with the Home Builders Institute (HBI) to provide training and job placement among both American and foreign workers.
"We need to look holistically at the home building infrastructure to meet growing and future demand," NAHB Chairman Rick Judson said in the press statement. "To avoid a run-up in prices in hot markets due to labor issues, we need to complement our current training programs with a market-based visa system that would allow more immigrants to legally enter the construction workforce each year when there is a dearth of workers to fill the jobs that are needed."
Even with this information in mind, there is still plenty of data to suggest that the housing market is in a steady state of recovery, such as increasing property values and rising mortgage rates. With this in mind, there is a good chance that more people will begin buying and selling homes as the busy spring season gets underway. It's important, as always, for lenders to ensure that borrowers can stay on top of their monthly payments, and they can do so by investing in loan management software.