NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — For the past few years, even more so since mid-2020, the Greater Nashville area has struggled with its housing stock.
It’s a trend happening nationwide. According to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), there are 680,000 fewer homes available for sale across the country now compared to what we’ve seen on the market in the last five years.
To put it simply, we need more and need it fast.
The good news here, that same report from NAR says nationwide, we are now building nearly 25 percent more homes than we typically have built in April in the last couple of decades, with nearly half of all U.S metros issuing more single-family building permits than the historical average.
Here locally, the Greater Nashville area is catching on with the trend, now ranked in the top 10 areas with the most single-family building permits, coming in at number 9 in the nation with 15,426 building permits issued in the last 12 months.
“Everyone always asks ‘is that enough?’ No, it’s not, because we still need more stock to fill the buyer need. Inventory is so low in the Nashville market right now that anytime you see a report that building permits are up, it’s good, especially for first time home buyers,” Brian Copeland says, President of Greater Nashville Realtors.
It’s why builders are banking on finding more land, looking to Murfreesboro, Williamson County and Clarksville.
In fact, out of the top 10 metros with the fastest growth of single-family permits, Clarksville is ranked 5th in the country, with new permits growing 122 percent within the last 20 years.
“Land in Davidson County is so scarce, we don’t see one area that’s just bubbling over with new construction,” Copeland says. “There tends to be more land available in Northeast Nashville, Boudreaux, East Nashville, that does have some infill availability.”
Copeland says the issue is finding homes that exist on large enough lots where you can conquer and divide. He says that’s where we’re seeing a lot of new homes being built. Copeland adds that Madison, Goodlettsville, Antioch and Hermitage are also popular areas for new construction.
But, at what point do we sacrifice quality for quantity of homes?
“I think a lot of people ask when homes are being built quickly, they worry about quality of homes,” Copeland says, adding that they’re not putting the homes up any quicker, we’re just seeing more coming to the market. But, it still takes the same amount of time to build.
“One of the joys in new construction, when you’re using a realtor, you can make sure you watch that contract, and make sure you have an inspection time on it.”