2008 was an extremely difficult time for the housing industry. The bottom had fallen out of the market. Subprime mortgages were the scourge of the nation and the metaphorical sky was falling.
With this onslaught of terrible news, the stock prices of everything and anything dropped hard, but in particular, anything within a stone's throw of housing dropped further and faster.
That was then. We're now in 2012 and while employment is still struggling, housing starts are improving. We used this as inspiration to find 6 housing-related stocks that might benefit from this change.
We dug deep into different industries and sectors to find those companies that would not only benefit from an improved housing sector, but are also near their discounted cash flow valuation using a 15% discount rate.
Here are 6 who got bulldozed in 2008. The question is, with the economy on shaky ground, are they safe bets at this point?
1. Thor Industries (NYSE:THO)
THO offers a range of travel trailers and motorhomes. From its peak in October 2007, it dropped by 78% by May 2009. Since its bottom, the stock price has increased threefold to $29 and it looks like many believe there's more room to run. Out of 231 ratings from Motley Fool's CAPS community, 199 (86%) are bullish but they've only given it a CAPS rating of 3 out of 5 stars. The average analyst target price is $38.83, according to MarketWatch. The Vuru Growth Price pegs the fair value lower than that at $27.03, making the stock slightly overvalued by 7%. THO is currently trading at $29.37 with a market cap of $1.5B.
2. Comfort Systems USA (NYSE:FIX)
FIX provides installation, maintenance, repair, and replacement services for the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems in the mechanical services industry in the U.S. From its peak in August 2008, it dropped 54% by November. Since its bottom, the stock price is up 28%. Out of 125 ratings, 121 (96% of) members of the Motley Fool CAPS community believe FIX will outperform and they've given the stock a perfect CAPS rating of 5 out of 5 stars. The average analyst target price is $11.83, according to MarketWatch. The Vuru Growth Price agrees with analysts on this one with a fair value of $11.93, making the stock undervalued by 32%. FIX is currently trading at $9.04 with a market cap of $335M.
3. NVR Inc. (NYSE:NVR)
NVR operates as a homebuilder in the U.S., engaging in the construction and sale of single-family detached homes, townhomes and condominium buildings. This company's stock bottomed out after losing 57% of its value between May 2007 and March 2009, but since then, it's recovered substantially to the tune of 137%. Out of 526 ratings from Motley Fool's CAPS community, 53% are bearish and it has a CAPS rating of 2 out of 5 stars. The average analyst target price is $778.75, according to MarketWatch. The Vuru Growth Price marks the business' value significantly lower at $260, making the stock overvalued by 65%. This is mainly due to NVR's most recent year having negative free cash flow. NVR is currently trading at $750.75 with a market cap of $3.8B.
4. Desarrolladora Homex (NYSE:HXM)
HXM is a vertically integrated home development company principally engaged in the development, construction, and sale of affordable entry-level, middle-income and tourism housing in Mexico; and affordable entry-level housing in Brazil. This stock cratered in June of 2008 all the way until March 2009, dropped a wholesome 83%. It's only up 6% since then. Out of 265 ratings from Motley Fool's CAPS community, 94% are bullish but it only has a CAPS rating of 3 out of 5 stars. The average analyst target price is $23.23, according to MarketWatch. The Vuru Growth Price pegs the fair value more aggressively at $32, making HXM undervalued by 164%. The stock is currently trading at $12 and has a market cap of $691M.
5. Emcor Group (NYSE:EME)
EME provides electrical and mechanical construction and facilities services worldwide. In particular, it engages in the design, integration, installation, start-up, operation and maintenance of various electrical and mechanical systems. This stock waddled its way down 57% between July 2007 and December 2008 but is up 68% since then. Out of 271 ratings from Motley Fool's CAPS community, 259 (96%) are bullish and it has a CAPS rating of 5 out of 5 - pretty good. The average analyst target price is $35, according to MarketWatch. The Vuru Growth Price puts the fair value slightly lower at $33, making it undervalued by 25%. EME is currently trading at $26.20 and has a market cap of $1.74B.
6. Toll Brothers Inc. (NYSE:TOL)
TOL designs, builds, markets and arranges finance for single-family detached and attached homes in luxury residential communities in the United States. This stock found its way down from $33 to $15 from the beginning of January 2007 to March 2009. It's up 76% since then. The Motley Fool's CAPS community is surprisingly bearish on this stock with 51% (708) of raters deeming it likely to underperform and like NVR, it only has a CAPS star rating of 2 out of 5. The average analyst target price is $29, according to MarketWatch. The Vuru Growth Price completely disagrees with that assessment pegging the fair value at $17, making TOL overvalued by 29%. TOL is currently trading at $23.96 and has a market cap of $4B.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.