Commerce figures are out for new home construction sales in November. From the St. Pete Times:
'Maybe it was balmy weather up North, maybe it was lower interest rates, but the country as a whole experienced a mini spike in new home sales in November.
Pity poor Florida: The Sunshine State, and most of the South for that matter, didn't enjoy the rebound.
Nationally, new home sales in November rose 3.4 percent from the previous month to an annual rate of 1.047-million. That exceeded economists' forecasts of a 1.018-million homes.'
Sadly, prices have risen. Again.
'The national median new home price climbed to $251,700 in November 2006 from $237,900 in November 2005.'
Remember, the Commerce Department report does not take into account cancellations - so these numbers tend to be higher than actual.
And for the Tampa Bay region, some reports on the builders.
'Transeastern Homes: The builder of such best-selling neighborhoods as New Tampa's Live Oak Preserve has tried to stave off bankruptcy by laying off more than 100 and dismissing regional president Bob Krieff.
Ryland Homes: Heavily invested in Pasco County, Ryland's southeast division, which includes Florida, saw new home orders tank 64 percent from the third quarter of 2005 to the third quarter of 2006.
Centex Homes: Centex's sales this year have been leaden compared to 2005. In the Southeast region, the number of home contracts plunged 53 percent.
Beazer Homes: In the Atlanta builder's annual report in September, the company said new home orders dropped by a third in Florida. Its stronghold has been southeast Hillsborough County.
Pulte Homes: Based on its latest report, the nation's second-biggest homebuilder sold 29 percent fewer homes in the region that includes Florida. It has trimmed its work force 10 percent. Pulte is active in Clearwater, Seminole, Hudson and Wesley Chapel.'
US Commerce Report - New Home Sales