Stories

The housing market has recovered; construction workers haven't

Rebecca Zisser / Axios

It's one of the great mysteries of the U.S. real-estate recovery: home prices nationally are just a touch below pre-crisis levels, and at all-time highs in many populous markets, as buyers scramble to grab what they can during a 30-year low for housing inventory. Yet homebuilders are moving at a snail's pace to meet this heated demand — they are breaking ground on just 849,000 new single-family homes per year, well below the 2007 rate of 1,036,000.

This is having a spillover effect in jobs: Just 767,000 people are employed in residential-construction in the U.S., 20% below the figure a decade ago.