Land Rush Is On as Builders Try to Catch Up to Housing Demand

As the housing market roars back to life, the price of "dirt", or developable land, is surging in America's most desirable areas - including the outer suburbs. A shortage of lots is said to be hampering the housing recovery.
September 9, 2013, 2pm PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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"The latest land rush is in full swing," writes Shaila Dewan, "as developers realize that they have failed to feed the zoning, permitting and mapping pipeline, which can take months or years to turn raw fields into buildable lots. They are realizing another thing, too: they have been sorely missed."

“For the first time, I’ve seen cities want to work to help figure it out, rather than doing us a favor all the time to let us develop,” said Scott Carlston of Hunter Emerson, a development partnership.

“We have gone from a situation where five years ago everyone was saying, ‘There’s too many lots,’ to today, builders are literally crying on our shoulder saying, ‘There’s not enough lots. We can’t find any,’” said Bradley F. Hunter, the chief economist at MetroStudy.

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Published on Saturday, September 7, 2013 in The New York Times
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