What do you see for the future of housing in our County?
I have owned our homebuilding business since 1989. When I think about the demographic, political, technical and workforce changes since our beginning it is prolific. One thing that I do know is one can only look at the past to help give some kind of perspective of what the future may hold.
Housing reacts to both the political and demographic make ups of our community.
The first 10 years of building homes our market was more of a price and terms market. Most households had a single breadwinner. Interest rates were higher. The combination of these two factors made the land and permitting pricing lower. Home designs were simple and cost effective to build.
Today it is the opposite. Households consists of two breadwinners and the costs on all fronts is much higher. I would guess this to remain the same over the next 20 years.
The baby boomers will be retired or retiring and you will see their needs be met much differently than in the past. They will be the most active aged group in our history and housing will reflect that. It will be interesting to see what the younger buyer’s value. A trend now is moving into the cities (gentrification) rather than the suburbs.
Politically we have been building under the State Growth Management Act of 1994. When you see all the housing crammed together you can thank this piece of legislation (not the private sector). I believe we are experiencing the negative sides of this now and we will all come to our senses in the future.
Interest rates I believe will stay low. Twenty five years ago a 10% interest rate was fantastic. Today it would have devastating effects.