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Previous ReportsFirst Quarter, 2014 Fourth Quarter, 2013
Housing seemed to have a slow start to the spring selling season, but appearances deceive. Dig into that spring soil and you begin to unearth differences in individual areas and market segments. Inventory is slowly rising in some areas. Activity is picking up in the upper price tiers. Rents continue to climb in most metros. And interest rates are generally lower than a year ago, to the surprise of some and the delight of others.
Housing is one part of a broader ecosystem that thrives on a strong economy that churns out good jobs. First-quarter employment figures were adequate but not thrilling, but second-quarter numbers figure to be more positive. Access to mortgage capital remains an ongoing concern. As cash and investor deals fade, first-time buyers typically step to the forefront, but tight credit can and has been a real hurdle.