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Housing in 2013

Before you can look forward to the future, it’s important to first take a look back and assess the year that’s passed. David Crowe, the Chief Economist for the National Association of Home Builders, did just that recently in the video series Housing Now for the association’s economics and housing policy blog. In this special end of year installment, Crowe recaps the highs and lows of the housing market over the past year and predicts what the industry can expect in 2014.

Paul Lopez, Senior Correspondent for Housing Now first asked the NAHB’s Chief Economist, “So, how did housing fare this year?”

“Well, housing did ok,” said Crowe. “We advanced again as we have been for the past couple years. We did hit a soft spot in the middle of the year. Interest rates rose, that seemed to chill a little bit of the demand. The economy sort of faltered a bit, so there was a hesitancy there.”

Still, Crowe insists that despite that hesitancy, the market did not fall backwards. He estimates that once the data is in, overall housing in 2013 will come out about 15 percent better than 2012. Which isn’t as high as what was predicted at the beginning of the year, but a decent year nonetheless. The multifamily sector continued to grow, said Crowe, as newly formed households tend to opt for apartments. As for the single-family market, it stalled slightly and didn’t grow nearly as fast or strong as multifamily, but is moving forward regardless.

“In terms of normal,” said Crowe, “we’re barely half way there. When you look back say, at the early 2000s, that’s really the last time we had a normal year of production.”

Even though there’s still a ways to go, several years in fact, Crowe predicts continued growth for 2014.

Watch the full video from NAHB here.

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