Volume 13, Issue 8 - October 2012

Industry Indices

In the Spotlight: 99 Improving Housing Markets
The number of improving housing markets across the country rose to 99 in September, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/First American Improving Markets Index (IMI). This is up from 80 metros that were listed as improving in August and includes representatives from 33 states as well as the District of Columbia.

A complete list of all 99 metropolitan areas currently on the IMI, and separate breakouts of metros newly added to or dropped from the list in September are available at: www.nahb.org/imi.

Builder Confidence Continues to Improve
Builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes improved for a fourth consecutive month in August with a two-point gain to 37 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. Regionally, builder confidence rose nine points to 42 in the Midwest and two points to 35 in the South, but declined nine points to 25 in the Northeast and three points to 40 in the West in August.

July Housing Numbers
Single-family authorizations: Up 4.5 percent (±0.8 percent) above the revised June figure of 491,000.

Single-family housing starts: Down 6.5 percent (±8.7 percent) below the revised June figure of 537,000.

Single-family housing completions: Down 5.9 percent (±9.2 percent) below the revised June rate of 476,000.

Rising Home Prices Push Affordability Slightly Lower
Strengthening house prices in U.S. metros contributed to slightly lower housing affordability in the second quarter, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index. The most affordable major housing market in this year’s second quarter was Youngstown-Warren-Boardman, Ohio-Pa., where 93.4 percent of homes sold during the period were affordable to households earning the area’s median family income. Major metros at the bottom of the affordability chart included San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, Calif.; Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, Conn.; Santa Ana-Anaheim-Irvine, Calif.; and Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, Calif.; in that order.


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