A marked increase in pre-sold custom-built homes appears to be on the rise, said a news release from the PRNewswire. Stabilized and, in many cases, lower building material costs, coupled with lower interest rates offered by eager-to-lend financial institutions, may be part of the reason.

Other gains in housing are being realized as well. Sales of newly built single-family homes turned upward in September, posting a 2.7 percent gain to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 464,000 units, according to U.S. Commerce Department numbers released October 28, 2008. The report also indicated that builders are making substantial progress in winnowing down the month's supply of unsold units on the market.

“It’s great to see some upward movement in new-home sales, particularly in light of the strong efforts that home builders have been making to bring supply and demand back into balance by limiting new construction and offering substantial price- and non-price incentives on already-built units,” said NAHB Chairman Sandy Dunn, a homebuilder from Point Pleasant, W.Va.