Construction and Real Estate - June 2009
Construction and Real Estate
Overall, District home sales remained weak in May; however, evidence was seen that home prices have hit bottom in some District markets. Sales appear to be driven largely by low-end homes and deeply discounted properties. Tax incentives also reportedly helped sales. The high-end market remains weak and under significant downward price pressure. Construction remained at low levels across the District, but recent data indicated that activity was bottoming out, and the outlook among District builders remained more positive than earlier this year. Realtors also continued to anticipate improving conditions over the next several months.
Commercial development remained weak across the District. Vacancy rates trended up, with greater availability of sublease space reported in some areas. Developers continued to report fewer backlogs, and more projects were delayed. Most commercial contacts anticipate weaker activity for 2009, which will carry over into 2010. Recent data support the view that commercial construction activity will continue to soften.