Improving Markets List Includes Metros in Every State
The number of improving housing markets continued to expand for a sixth consecutive month to a total of 259 metropolitan areas on the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index (IMI) for February, released on Feb. 6. This was up from 242 markets listed as improving in January, and included entrants from all 50 states as well as the District of Columbia.
A total of 20 new metros were added to the list and three were dropped from it this month. Newly added metros included such geographically diverse locations as Rome, Ga.; Fort Wayne, Ind.; Myrtle Beach, S.C.; Albuquerque, N.M.; and Racine, Wis. The fact that all 50 states now have at least one metro on the improving list shows that the housing recovery has substantial momentum and continues to expand from one market to the next, with just over 70% of the 361 metros covered by our index now making the list.
“That’s a far cry from when we initiated this index with just 12 improving metros in September of 2011 for the purpose of highlighting places that didn’t fit the mold of the national headlines,” noted NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “Today, the story is about how widespread the recovery has become as conditions steadily improve in markets nationwide.”
Keep in mind that in order to be listed on the IMI, a metropolitan area must see improvement in each of three key measures of market strength (home price appreciation, single-family permits and employment) for at least six consecutive months following those measures’ respective troughs.
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- Joanne Loftus