A new report released today shows that in the past 20 years construction of new homes fell 5.5 million units short of the long-term historical levels. According to the National Association of Realtors, US builders added an average of 1.225 million new housing units each year. This figure is down from an annual average of 1.5 million new units from 1968 to 2000. “The scale of the problem is so large,” said David Bank, senior Vice President of Rosen Consulting Group which prepared the report for the NAR. “We need affordable (housing) we need market-rate, we need single family, we need multifamily.” In short, everything.
The limited supply has been driving housing prices for both renters and home buyers, along with strong demand. The median existing-home price rose 19 percent to a record $341,600 in April compared a a year ago. The shortage became more acute in the past year because of the Covid-19 pandemic as builders slowed construction in some areas and many homeowners delayed or canceled their plans to sell their homes.