Russia’s Attack On Ukraine Felt By Builders In U.S.

By CHUCK GREEN Builders in the United States are feeling the effects of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, leading some experts to say there will be ramifications in the home and commercial markets. “Already, retail gasoline and diesel prices have jumped by record amounts and reached record levels. Construction firms use large amounts of fuel for their own trucks and offroad equipment,” said Ken Simonson, Chief Economist of The Associated General Contractors of America. Doubling down on the notion that the conflict is putting builders in a sticky situation, Simonson said they pay directly through fuel surcharges. Costs are embedded in the thousands of deliveries of equipment and materials to job sites as well as the hauling away of dirt, debris,…

Invasion Of Ukraine, Inflation To Take Toll On U.S. Housing Sector

By KIMBERLEY HAAS Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its implications for the global economy have some experts saying the housing market in the United States will be impacted because of growing inflation pressures and supply chain difficulties. The Fannie Mae Economic and Strategic Research Group now projects full-year 2022 real gross domestic product growth of 2.3%, down from last month’s projection of 2.8%. They have also increased their 30-year fixed mortgage rate forecast to 3.8% in 2022 and 3.9% in 2023. Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24. Just before the war began, inflation hit a 40-year high and the Federal Reserve was poised to begin a course of significant money tightening. According to the ESR Group, the task of enacting…

Second Home Demand Cools After Explosive January

Demand for vacation homes has cooled down after skyrocketing to near-record levels in January, Redfin reported. February saw second home demand reach its lowest level since May 2020 as mortgage rates continued climbing, only 35% above pre-pandemic levels. Rates declined for a few weeks due to uncertainty surrounding Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, but started inching up again last week, reaching 3.85%. While demand is still significantly elevated from two years ago, it’s nothing compared to January’s 87% increase. February was also the first month where primary residence demand beat out vacation home demand since the pandemic began, though only by 1%. “Rising mortgage rates, combined with rising home prices, are hitting the second-home market much harder than the primary-home market,”…