Smile! Break out the hammer and nails! It's party time!
OK, perhaps an explanation is in order. Because housing is horrendous, that means that if you want to buy a home these days, prices are cheap and getting cheaper. This is probably the best time in a while to buy a house. While that sounds like a promo from the National Association of Realtors, it also misses a couple of points.
First, if prices are falling and will keep falling, then why buy today? Why not just wait till next week or next month, and prices will be even cheaper? D.R. Horton
Second, assuming you don't want to wait, could you get the financing to buy a house? Banks have tightened the screws at last on their leaky lending ways, and getting a new mortgage might be possible only for those with the highest credit scores, pristine histories, and a wad of cash to use as a down payment.
Yet homeowners can take solace in the industry's doom and gloom. Thinking of remodeling the den? Contractors have lots of time on their hands these days and are willing to take on jobs they previously would have passed on. They'll charge less for it, too.
You'll also find that supplies for your projects are cheaper. As prices for plywood and oriented strand board (OSB) soared during the boom years -- OSB, for example, topped $400 per thousand square feet -- builders were turning to alternatives like structural intermediate blackboard, although it caused heads to turn at all the black-clad houses. Now, though, prices are tumbling. That pricey OSB was below $250 in June. Framing lumber is off 24%, according to the National Association of Home Builders, and USG
Those factors could very well mark an upturn for retailers like Home Depot
The bursting of the housing bubble has been grim indeed, but it's no reason we can't find some reason to celebrate.
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Fool contributor Rich Duprey owns shares of USG, but does not have a financial position in any of the other stocks mentioned in this article. You can see his holdings here. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.
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