Recent advances in the petroleum sector have led major analysts and energy companies to broadly anticipate expansive increases in Permian Basin production over the next few years. Much of this activity will be centered in the Midland area and the resulting growth will bring enormous potential benefits with profound implications for housing. In light of this growth, it is imperative that additional land be available for residential development. Proactive efforts to deal with issues and prepare for the coming growth can position the area to emerge stronger and more prosperous in the future.
After a sluggish start to the year, Dr. Perryman says the Texas housing market seems to be on fire, with home starts in March the most in ten years.
There is another signal that Texas' economic rebound is continuing. Real estate agents sold a record 68,000 homes in the first quarter.
After more than a decade, the amount of household debt (including mortgages) has surpassed pre-Great Recession levels. Sometimes, an upswing in debt of certain types can be a negative signal, such as rising credit card debt in an economic downturn as people try to deal with financial setbacks such as job losses. However, rising debt can also reflect economic strength as increasing numbers of households are willing and able to purchase big-ticket items such as homes and cars.
We recently passed a notable milestone in the long process of recovering from the Great Recession: household debt levels have surpassed the peak reached during the recession in 2008. In many ways, this rise in consumer debt is a good sign in that it indicates Americans are feeling optimistic enough to take on additional obligations. Moreover, housing markets and credit conditions have normalized to the point where mortgages are trending upward along with loan quality. On the other hand, it can be viewed in a somewhat more negative light in some respects, particularly given that one category responsible for significant growth is student debt which may not be providing adequate returns in terms of enhanced future earning capacity or other educational goals. Let's take a brief look at some of the salient points.